English/Idiomatic Phrases

English Wikibook (edit)
General: Introduction - Grammar
Parts of speech: Nouns - Verbs - Adjectives - Adverbs - Pronouns - Conjunctions - Prepositions - Interjections
Parts of the sentence: Subjects - Predicates
Word functions: Subjects - Predicates - Direct Objects - Indirect Objects - Objects of the Preposition
Types of sentences: Simple Sentences - Complex Sentences
Types of Phrases: Adjective - Adverb - Noun
Types of Clauses: Adjective - Adverb - Noun
Other English topics: Gerunds - Idiomatic Phrases - Spelling - Vocabulary - Punctuation - Syntax - Appositives - Phonics - Pronunciation

What is an idiomatic phrase?

An idiomatic phrase is a group of words that do not mean what they appear to mean.


  • Cross my mind - this means to remember e.g. It never crossed my mind to buy any milk
  • Take to heart - this means to "take it seriously or personally"
  • Give a hand - this means to help e.g. Shall I give you a hand or are you OK?
  • Turn over a new leaf - this means to "start over from scratch and become a better person"
  • Fed up - this means to be irritated or bored e.g. I'm fed up with the cold weather
  • Raining cats and dogs - this means to rain a lot e.g. I stayed at home because it was raining cats and dogs
  • At arms length - this means t very near