English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List of Idioms - F
|fly by the seat of your pants||If you fly by
the seat of your pants, you do
something without any knowledge or
experience, using only your instinct and
hoping that you will succeed.
Without any formal training, he decided to fly by the seat of his pants and try his luck in New York.
|fly in the face of||If an action or
statement flies in the face of
something, it is completely opposite to what
is usual or expected.
His style of teaching flies in the face of the school's established methods.
|on the fly||If you do something
on the fly, you do it quickly, without
thinking much about it, while doing
I'm so busy I usually have lunch on the fly.
|fly in the ointment||A fly in the
ointment refers to something that
prevents a situation from being completely
Tony's poor English was a fly in the ointment when he applied for the job.
|fly off the handle||A person who
flies off the handle becomes suddenly
Dad flew off the handle when I told him I had damaged his new car.
|fly on the wall||A person who
watches a situation without being noticed is
called a fly on the wall.
I'd like to be a fly on the wall when the management discusses my project.
|it will never fly||To say that
something will never fly means that
it will not be successful.
He's got incredible ideas, but none that will ever fly!
|with flying colours||To achieve
something with flying colours means
to do it very successfully.
My daughter passed the entrance exam with flying colours. I'm so proud of her.
|flying start||If something
gets off to a flying start, it is
Sales of the book got off to a flying start and exceeded our expectations.
|foam at the mouth||Someone who
foams at the mouth is extremely angry
The director was foaming at the mouth when he saw a picture of his children in the newspaper.
|follow one's nose||If you follow
your nose, you go straight ahead.
This can also mean to follow your instinct in life.
The station is at the end of the road - just follow your nose.
|follow in someone's footsteps||If you follow
in someone's footsteps, for example a
parent, you lead a similar life or do the
Lily followed in her her mother's footsteps and became a teacher.
|follow suit||If you follow
suit, you do the same as another person
has just done.
The first robber held up his hands, then the other two followed suit.
|food for thought||If something give
you food for thought, it makes you
think seriously about a particular subject.
The documentary on poverty in the world really gave me food for thought.
|fool's errand||If you go on a
fool's errand, you try to do something
which is useless, unnecessary or has no
chance of success.
I realized it was a fool's errand to look for a bank in such an isolated region.
alphabetical lists F ...
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