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English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions


Alphabetical List of Idioms - G

(Idioms G page 5 : give shirt → go against tide )

give the shirt off one's back This expression is used to describe a kind-hearted or generous person who would give you anything he/she owns to help you.
Mike would give the shirt off  his back to help a friend in difficulty.
give the slip If you give the slip to somebody who is following you, you manage to hide or get away from them.
The police were on his trail, but he managed to give them the slip.
give a tongue-lashing When you scold someone severely, you give them a tongue-lashing.
The teacher gave Jeremy a tongue-lashing when he arrived late for school for the third time.
give up the ghost If someone or something gives up the ghost, they die or stop working.
My mother's old TV set has finally given up the ghost.  I'm off to buy her a new one.
give or take (quantity) This term is used when expressing an amount or estimate that is not exactly right.  It means 'plus or minus', 'more or less', or 'approximately'.
The nearest town is about 100 miles away, give or take a few miles.
gizmo The term 'gizmo' refers to a gadget or any small technological item which is unusual or novel, and for which the proper term is unknown or forgotten.
glass ceiling This term refers to a discriminatory barrier perceived by women and minorities that prevents them from rising to positions of power or responsibility.
Claire knew she would never break the glass ceiling and rise to a senior management position.
gloves are off This expression is used when there are signs that a fight is about to start.
The two candidates are out of their seats.  The gloves are off!
glowing terms If you speak about something in glowing terms, you talk about it in a very positive way.
Mary talks about her home town in glowing terms;  it must be a wonderful place.
glutton for punishment If you say that someone is a glutton for punishment, you express your surprise that they continue to do something which they find unpleasant or difficult.
You get seasick but you're going to travel by boat - you're a glutton for punishment!
gnomes of Zurich This is a disparaging term for Swiss bankers who control a lot of money, are said to be uninterested in the provenance of funds and protect their clients' identity.
The gnomes of Zurich refuse to cooperate with the investigating officials.
go against the grain If something goes against the grain, it is difficult to accept because it is very different from what is considered normal or natural.
Having to import apples in an apple-growing region really goes against the grain!
go against the tide If you go against the tide (or the stream), you refuse to conform to current trends, or the opinions or behaviour of other people.
Bill can be difficult to work with; he constantly goes against the tide.
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  alphabetical lists G ... 

G1 G2 G3 G4 G5 G6 G7 G8 G9 G10

  more alphabetical lists ... 

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