English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List of Idioms - F
|fiddling while Rome burns||To say that someone
is fiddling while Rome burns means
that they are doing unimportant things while
there are serious problems to be dealt with.
His visit to the trade fair was 'fiddling while Rome burns' according to the strikers.
|field day||A field day
refers to a day or period of great
excitement and activity.
Journalists will have a field day with the latest political scandal.
|fifth wheel||This expression
refers to a person who find themselves in a
situation where their presence is
unnecessary and as a result they feel
Everyone seemed to have a specific role except me. I felt like a fifth wheel
|fight like cat and dog||Two people who
fight or argue like cat and dog
frequently have violent arguments, even
though they are fond of each other.
They fight like cat and dog but they're still together after 30 years.
|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 ingeneral.
Brian decided it was a waste of energy trying to obtain a tax refund - you can't fight the city hall.
|fight a losing battle||If someone is
fighting a losing battle, they are
trying to do something even when there is
little chance of succeeding.
The headmaster is fighting a losing battle trying to ban mobile phones at school.
|fight shy||If you fight
shy of something, such as a task, a
problem or a duty, you want to avoid doing
it or you are unwilling to confront it.
He had money problems for years but he fought shy of asking his children for help.
|fight tooth and nail||If you fight tooth and nail for
something, you fight with energy and
The Transport Minister fought tooth and nail to have the proposed road safety law accepted.
|fight an uphill battle||A person faced with
an uphill battle has to struggle
against very unfavourable circumstances.
After the terrible accident, his recovery was an uphill battle all the way.
|figment of imagination||A figment of
one's imagination is an appearance,
event or incident that is not considered to
be real but only imaginary.
Other people saw the car, so it's not a figment of my imagination!
|(get it down to) a fine art||When you learn to do something
perfectly, you get it down to a fine
Entertaining her husband's business associates is not a problem for Jane; she's got that down to a fine art!
|fine-tooth comb||To go over
something with a fine-tooth comb
means to examine it closely and thoroughly
so as not to miss any details.
The police are examining the scene of the crime with a fine-tooth comb.
|fine tuning||Small changes to
something to improve it or make it work
better are called fine tuning.
We are still fine-tuning our new website and appreciate your patience.
|have a finger in every pie||If someone has a
finger in every pie, they are involved in
For information about the activities in this town, you should talk to John Brown. He's got a finger in every pie.
alphabetical lists F ...
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