Q. 3 A4.4( 20 Votes )

Idioms

Idioms are groups of words with a fixed order, and a particular meaning different from the meanings of each of their words put together. (Phrasal verbs can also be idioms; they are said to be ‘idiomatic’ when their meanings are unpredictable). For example, do you know what it means to meet one’s match in English? It makes to meet someone who is as good as oneself, or even better, in some skill or quality. Do you know what it means to let the cat out of the bag? Can you guess?

A. Here are a few sentences from the text which have idiomatic expressions. Can you say what each means? (You might want to consult a dictionary first.)

(i) Our entire class is quaking in its boots.

…………………………………………………………..

(ii) Until then, we keep telling each other not to lose heart.

…………………………………………………………….

(iii) Mr. Keesing was annoyed with me for ages because I talked so much.

…………………………………………………………………..

(iv) Mr. Keesing was trying to play a joke on me with this ridiculous subject, but I’d make sure the joke was on him.

…………………………………………………………………..

Answer :

(i) The sentence is trying to convey that all the students were frightened.


(ii) The sentence states that one must not stop believing that one can succeed.


(iii) The sentence says that Mr. Keesing had been annoyed since a long period of time.


(iv) The sentence is trying to convey the situation where a person who tried to make somebody look foolish instead looked ridiculous himself.


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PREVIOUSPhrasal verbsA phrasal verb is a verb followed by a preposition or an adverb. Its meaning is often different from the meaning of its parts.Compare the meanings of the verbs gets on and run away in (a) and (b) below. You can easily guess their meanings in (a) but in (b) they have special meanings.(a) She got on at Agra when the bus stopped for breakfast.Dev Anand ran away from home when he was a teenager.In (a) i.e. the first sentence, she got on refers to the movement of a personWhereasIn the second sentence, it says that Dev Anand ran away i.e. left his house(b) She’s eager to get on in life. (Succeed)The visitors ran away with the match. (Won easily)In (b) i.e. the first sentence, it refers to climbing the ladder of successWhereasIn the second sentence, it refers to winning the match (ran away with the match)Some phrasal verbs have three parts: a verb followed by an adverb and a preposition. For Example:(c) Our car ran out of petrol just outside the city limits.(d) The government wants to reach out to the people with this new campaign.B. Now find the sentences in the lesson that have the phrasal verbs given below. Match them with their meanings. (you have already found out the meanings of some of them.) Are their meanings the same as that of their parts? (Note that two parts of the phrasal verb may occur separated in the text.)NEXTHere are a few more idiomatic expressions that occur in the text. Try to use them in sentences of your own.(i) Caught my eye(ii) He’d had enough(iii) Laugh ourselves silly(iv) Can’t bring myself to
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RELATED QUESTIONS :

Do you know how to use a dictionary to find out the meanings or idiomatic expressions? Take, for example, the expressions caught my eye in the story. Where-under which word-would you look for it in the dictionary?

Look for it under the first word. But if the first word is a ‘grammatically’ word like a, the, for, etc., then take the next word. That is, look for the first ‘meaningful’ word in the expression. In our example, it is the word caught.


But you wouldn’t find caught in the dictionary because it is the past tense of catch. You’ll find caught listed under catch. So you must look catch for the expressions caught my eye. Which other expressions with catch are listed below in your dictionary?


Note that a dictionary entry usually first give the meanings of the word itself, and then gives a list of idiomatic expressions using that word. For example, study this partial entry for the noun ‘eye’ from the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, 2005.


Eye


Noun


Part of the body, either of the two organs of the face that you see with: The suspect has dark hair and green eyes.


Ability to see: A surgeon needs a good eye and a steady hand.


The way of seeing -a particular way of seeing: He looked at the design with the eye of an engineer.


You have read the expressions ‘not to lose heart’ in this text. Now find out the meanings of the following expressions using the word ‘heart’. Use each of them in a sentence of your own.


1. Break somebody’s heart


2. Close/dear to heart


3. From the (bottom of your) heart.


4. Have a heart


5. Have a heart of stone


6. Your heart goes out to somebody.

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