Questions tagged [expression-requests]

for questions looking for a specific expression.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
6
votes
4answers
562 views

Is there an English equivalent of the Portuguese saying “Seven dogs to a bone”?

Is there an English equivalent of the Portuguese saying “Seven dogs to a single bone”? Sorry for not including the detailed meaning of the expression. “Seven dogs to a single bone” is the literal ...
29
votes
7answers
4k views

English equivalent to “a small fruit in an elephant's mouth”

In the Indian language of Malayalam, there's a saying "Aana vayil ambazhanga", which literally translates to: A small fruit in an elephant's mouth. It means: Having too small an amount for a ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Word Or Expression For “This is background information you should know first” [closed]

I'm trying to write something at work that's broken into sections. One sub-section is just about background information that aids in understanding the subsequent sections to follow. I could label it "...
1
vote
1answer
24k views

A word for the sentiment: “You're the most beautiful man/woman I've ever seen” (but in reality I've seen others)

It is common and flattering to tell a man/woman You're the most beautiful man/woman I've ever seen. The thing is, this is never true. It's just like calling someone a "best friend". In most cases, ...
5
votes
1answer
553 views

English equivalent for the Persian expression “To keep one's face red with slap”

In Persian we have a saying "صورت را با سیلی سرخ نگه داشتن" which literally translates to: To keep one's face red(warm) with slap It's used in a situation in which a person, if poor or ...
0
votes
1answer
312 views

How to differentiate between decade and century in phrase like “late 1600s”?

If I wanted to say something occurred ~1627-1629, I would say "late 1620s". However if I wanted to say something occurred ~1607-1609, I couldn't say "late 1600s" because that would imply ~1670-1699.
1
vote
2answers
4k views

What are some nice words to describe one's body language when surprised? [closed]

I constantly use the expressions He opened his eyes wide His jaw dropped He gasped in surprise What others words/expressions can be used? EDIT: In this case, I'm looking for surprised in a good ...
30
votes
27answers
27k views

Idiom or expression that would imply “someone is a habitual liar”

I'm looking for an idiom or expression for describing people who tell lies out of habit (so you cannot trust them at all). I know that these people are called "compulsive liars", but I'm not looking ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

A phrase for when one is reduced to quibbling on unimportant details having had to give up significant ground

Is there a popular phrase or idiom to capture the following very particular scenario? Person A and person B are arguing over something. Person A repeatedly gives ground to B until the argument becomes ...
2
votes
2answers
102 views

expressions like “muscle in on…”

I am looking for a phrase of the same structure and meaning as 'muscle in on'. It is used to describe the action of using your influence to intervene in something so as to gain an advantage for ...
10
votes
16answers
8k views

Is there any idiom or expression that would imply “ It is hard to argue against such rationale”?

Is there any idiom, expression or saying that would imply "this is a rational idea and there is no room to dispute, so one has no choice but to accept it" (i.e. "It is hard to argue against such ...
12
votes
15answers
4k views

Is there a phrase to indicate the other party said something obvious [duplicate]

My first language is Spanish. In Spanish, we have a phrase to indicate when someone has said something so obvious or basic that everyone knows and so there's no need to say it. Is kind of sarcasm. Not ...
8
votes
8answers
816 views

Requesting a word or idiom for “impressive failure.”

I'm looking for a more formal expression or word that indicates failure to the extent that one would have to work very hard to achieve it. I'm aware of the idiom "epic fail" but I'm looking for ...
0
votes
2answers
4k views

“I just noticed it” vs “I barely noticed it”

Are "I just noticed it" and "I barely noticed it" the same? Let's say somebody tells me something about something/somebody and I didn't know about it until the person told me and the person asks, "...
0
votes
3answers
441 views

“wrench” is to “works” as “crimp” is to what?

It's commonly said that one puts or throws a "[monkey] wrench/(BrEng) spanner" in the "works", but what does one put a "crimp" into? CRIMP Google Image the act of crimping. a crimped ...
14
votes
10answers
3k views

What could be a snappy equivalent for the French catchphrase “si c'est gratuit vous êtes le produit”?

"Si c'est gratuit vous êtes le produit" can be translated literally as "If it's free then you are the product". It expresses the idea that if something is free (like Facebook) then the information ...
2
votes
3answers
816 views

How to say my bike is running out of air and needs to be filled with air

I'd appreciate if you tell me what is the right way to say my bike/motorbike/car's tire is running out of air and needs to be filled with air again in English.
8
votes
2answers
9k views

What do you call this sitting pose or position that sad or depressed people adopt?

What do you call this pose/ position that we adopt when we are very sad or depressed? (For example; when we feel heartbroken or have lost someone or something important.) P.S. I know that some people ...
1
vote
4answers
286 views

What is a colloquial and figurative expression for the pieces of luggage you carry when travelling light

I am looking for a figurative or graphic expression to describe the minimal luggage content, fast to pack, or that you always have with you, without which you would feel less safe when travelling. The ...
28
votes
21answers
71k views

Is there any idiom or expression that would mean “all my efforts wasted”?

I'm looking for an idiom or expression that would mean "all one's efforts wasted". I have found "to have one's cake dough". Can I use it for "all my efforts wasted" too? ( A non-native friend told me ...
3
votes
4answers
343 views

Is there a SPORTS PHRASE [in particular, one relating to “soccer”] similar to “make sure all our bases are covered”?

The expression mentioned in my question’s title is a baseball reference, of course, which I fear could potentially limit its understandability to only those English speakers who are familiar with that ...
0
votes
1answer
5k views

How to say “because the time is limited, we stop at this point” [closed]

I am in the process of writing my PhD thesis. In the introduction, after introducing the research problems and explaining the partial result achieved I want to say that because the time is limited we ...
4
votes
3answers
183 views

Looking for a single word or phrase

is there a single word or phrase in English that describes a simple grip children and adults use – to help someone climb up a tree or over a high fence. I mean when you clasp your hands and interlock ...
6
votes
10answers
7k views

Idiom or expression for criticizing people who ignore you right after getting what they wanted/ were after

There is an idiom in Persian that literally says: "(to be ignored right after) somebody's donkey has crossed or passed (over) the bridge" We use it in situations where someone (now feels relieved and)...
60
votes
15answers
39k views

What non-religious expressions can I use instead of “Thank God”? [closed]

I'll give an example to help: Someone suffered a car accident, but physically the person is OK. So I say, "Thank God, he/she is fine."
2
votes
2answers
72 views

To be a reference in a skill/topic

I am struggling on how to say when someone is an expert on a certain topic or skill. Because it is not exactly the meaning I intend to give. What I really want to say is like: "When you want to know ...
31
votes
12answers
6k views

Any equivalent to this Persian proverb “The yellow dog is the jackal's brother”?

Suppose you have a new boss and your former boss was a vicious and dictator one. Now you are visiting the new boss for the first time. He seems to be a nice person to you, but one of your colleagues ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Is there a phrase for “assuming facts to be correct in a statement”?

There is a kind of error or fallacy I often see, which is close to "Begging the Question", but I understand that the true meaning of "Begging the Question" is closer to "circular reasoning". The ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Remind someone of your favor too much

Is there an expression to use when we want to say that someone does you a favor, but they keep talking about it or reminding you of it too much in a way that annoys you?
7
votes
3answers
544 views

Idiom request for critisizing someone who ignores or overlooks their old things or friends, in an annoying manner, after having or finding new ones

I'm looking for and idiom, expression or proverb for criticizing (or describing) a situation in which someone doesn't pay attention to/ like their old things, friends, colleagues, hobbies, etc any ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

What is single word or phrase/idiom for “someone speaks alot but works very-very slow” [duplicate]

What is single word or phrase/idiom for "someone speaks a lot but works very very slow" for example.... someone said/planned he would do 100 task but actually finished less than 10 task
8
votes
13answers
6k views

Idiom request for describing an uncrowded or a deserted place

Is there any idiom for describing an uncrowded/ a deserted place? ( I mean a place with few or no people in there.) We say in Persian : " not a single bird is/ was flying (there)". ( i.e. There ...
38
votes
15answers
6k views

What is the equivalent of Persian idiom “When the reed blooms”?

In Persian, we say "When the reed blooms" when we want to express that an event: Never happens. (This is only the opinion of the speaker so it's not a fact) It's very unlikely to happen. It's going ...
4
votes
3answers
119 views

Is there a term for when an illness itself prevents the patient from obtaining a cure?

A challenge to curing patients is that sometimes the illness itself prevents a patient from taking a cure. Some examples: Depression - lack of motivation and negative thinking prevent the patient ...
5
votes
8answers
6k views

What is it called when you end up preparing for something and then it doesn't happen because you prepared?

For example, if you bring your umbrella with you 6/7 days of the week, and it does not rain - and then on the 7th day, you end up not bringing it with you, and it rains because you did not have your ...
61
votes
9answers
9k views

What do you call a minor flaw in a work that makes you realize how perfect/flawless it is otherwise?

For example, I was listening to an audio book the other day and the author mispronounced a word which got the audience laughing. Until that point, I didn't even know that there was an audience and ...
16
votes
24answers
6k views

What is a term or idiom for “blah blah blah” talk?

I am looking for a term or and idiomatic expression to convey the concept of "empty, irrelevant" talk. I am thinking about those situations in which people want to express their ideas on facts about ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

Equivalent expressions for 'I will reply in the near future' or 'before too long'

I'm looking for equivalent expressions for 'In the near future' & 'before too long'. I'd use these terms in the following way 'I will reply to you in the near future (or before too long)'. I ...
6
votes
8answers
2k views

Is there any Idiom or provide verb that would imply “ You cannot conceal such facts or issues”?

I'm looking for an idiom or expression that could be used for criticizing someone who tries to hide a big fact in their life/ an important issue while the nature of that fact/ issue is so that it will ...
7
votes
3answers
661 views

Ironic phrase for something becoming more complicated specifically because of efforts to 'simplify' it?

My linguistic skills fail me and I'd like some advice. I have a project that currently works exactly as intended, short and sweet, yet a higher up has changed their mind and are asking for it to be ...
5
votes
3answers
159 views

How can we say “I see my dreams not happening”

I want to say that I can see my dreams falling apart. Is it correct? I mean to say that the things I want to do (or happen) in the future seem to be impossible.. How can I say it?
13
votes
3answers
9k views

Verb for pressing upper and lower lips together?

There are some people that would call it to bite, but it is wrong because you don't use the teeth. Is there a verb or idiom for pressing with the lips? Something like this:
27
votes
9answers
22k views

How do you describe these animals' action/ state before attacking their prey?

Some animals like tigers, lions, cats, etc do this action before attacking their prey suddenly and unexpectedly. In fact they seem waiting insidiously (?) until the appropriate moment for attacking ...
15
votes
11answers
5k views

An idiomatic alternative to “familiar with the matter”

The common expression "familiar with the matter" is generally used to refer to people who have information that is not yet available to the public and is to be confirmed. Google Books For ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

When I say throughout this paper in the introduction, do I include the introduction and the abstract? [closed]

In the introduction of a research paper, we give something many definitions. Then I want to just focus on one definition among the definitions mentioned in the introduction; I.e. The paper is ...
5
votes
7answers
1k views

Is there an idiom/proverb in English to denote unfair discrimination?

In Tamil, we have a proverb that roughly translates into English as If the mother-in-law breaks the pot, it is just clay . But if the daughter-in-law breaks the pot, it is made of gold! ...
1
vote
2answers
288 views

Word for blaming all problems on one cause?

I'm not quite sure what the word I'm looking for is, but I think it would be something along the lines of stupid and unoriginal. For example, let's say a man frequently gets into arguments with his ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

What is the expression for rules that are typically flouted?

I seem to remember that it involves the word "observe", but I can neither recall it nor find it in a thesaurus.
5
votes
3answers
456 views

Another expression for an ellipsoid whose major axis is long

I'm writing a scientific journal. I'm looking for another expression (or other expressions) for an ellipsoid whose major axis is long (or very long). (By 'long ellipsoid' what I precisely mean is an ...
6
votes
7answers
731 views

English equivalent of Polish saying “[You've got] freedom Thomas in your own house!”

Another nice Polish saying about freedom in ones own house "Wolnoć Tomku w swoim domku!" that is rather untranslateable but modern version of this quotation would be "[You've got] freedom Thomas in ...