English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List - C
|as useful as a chocolate teapot||Something which is
of no practical use at all is about as
useful as a chocolate teapot.
When there are no roads, a car is about as useful as a chocolate teapot.
|chop and change||If you chop and
change, you constantly change your
opinion, plans or methods and often cause
Don't chop and change all the time - just make up your mind!
|Christmas comes but once a year||This expression means that Christmas is a time of celebration that only happens once a year, and that we should mark the occasion by being generous to others, especially the less fontunate.|
|off someone's Christmas list||This expression
means that you are no longer on friendly
terms with someone.
I've been off her Christmas card list since our dog messed up her garden!
|can't fight the city hall||This expression
means that it is useless to try to win a
battle against a politician, establishment
or bureaucracy in general.
Brian decided it was a waste of energy trying to obtain a tax refund - you can't fight the city hall.
|clap eyes on||If you clap
eyes on someone or something, you
actually see them.
I've heard of him but I've never clapped eyes on him.
|class act||To say that
someone, for example an athlete or
entertainer, is a class act means
that they are very good at what they do.
Her career is just beginning but she's already a class act.
|claw one's way back||In a situation
which has deteriorated, if you claw your
way back, you gradually regain your
former position through determination,
energy and hard work.
After a serious accident, the Olympic champion clawed his way back to the top, to the admiration of all.
|clean bill of health||If a person has a
clean bill of health, they have a
report or certificate declaring that their
health is satisfactory.
All candidates for the position must produce a clean bill of health.
|clean slate||A clean slate
is a record of your work or actions that
does not show past mistakes and allows you
to make a fresh start.
He was able to rebuild his life with a clean slate.
|clean as a whistle||Something as
clean as a whistle is extremely clean.
This can also mean that a person's criminal record is clean.
Bob spent the afternoon washing and shining his car until it was as clean as a whistle.
|clear the air||If you decide to
clear the air, you try to remove
the causes of fear, worry or suspicion by
talking about the problem openly.
The atmosphere had become so unpleasant that he decided it was time to clear the air.
|clear the way||If you
clear the way, you allow something to
happen by removing what was preventing it.
Opening universities to women cleared the way fo them to have a career and participate actively in today's society.
|clinch a deal||In a business
relationship, if you clinch a deal,
you reach agreement on a proposal or offer.
Paul's final argument enabled us to clinch the deal.
|clip someone's wings||If you clip
someone's wings, you do something to
restrict their freedom.
Taking away his credit card is a sure way to clip his wings.
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