English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List - B
|best bet||The action most
likely to succeed is called one's best
Your best bet would be to try calling him at home.
|best of one's ability||When someone does
something to the best of their ability,
they do it as well as they possibly can.
I felt nervous all through the interview, but I replied to the questions the best of my ability.
|best of both worlds||If a person has the
best of both worlds, they have the
benefits and advantages of two different
We live in the centre of town, but only 5 minutes from the beach. We have the best of both worlds.
|best foot forward||If you put your
best foot forward, you do
something as fast as you can.
It's a long way to the station, but if I put my best foot forward I should catch the next train.
|bet your bottom dollar||If you bet your
bottom dollar on something, you are
absolutely certain of it.
Jack is very punctual. You can bet your bottom dollar he'll be here at 9 o'clock on the dot.
|bet on the wrong horse||If you back
or bet on the wrong horse, for
example the loser in a contest, match or
election, you support the wrong person.
When I voted for him, I was convinced he would win, but I backed the wrong horse.
|better late than never||When someone does
something late, this remark means that it is
better to do it late than not do it at all.
Do you know what time it is? You promised you'd come early to help me - but better late than never I suppose!
|better safe than sorry||It's better to be
too cautious than to be careless and have
Let's book tickets in advance - better safe than sorry!
|better still/worse still||This expression is
used to emphasize that although something is
good, bad, etc., something else makes it
even better, worse, etc.
Not only did he get a great offer, but better still, a house and car come with the job.
|think better of||If you think
better of something, you decide not to
do what you intended doing.
I was going to go shopping, but when I saw the crowded car park,
I thought better of it.
|between the devil and the deep blue sea||If you are
between the devil and the deep blue sea,
you are in a situation where there are to
equally unpleasant alternatives.
When the new product didn't take off, the management was caught between the devil and the deep blue sea : develop a new marketing campaign or drop the product.
|it's beyond me||To
say 'it's beyond me' means that it is
impossible for you to understand.
It's beyond me why Mary wants to marry John.
|beyond any reasonable doubt||This is a legal
expression which means that something is
The court established, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the man was innocent.
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