English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List of Idioms - L
|leave no stone unturned||If you try
everything possible in order to achieve or
to find something, you leave no stone
The management left no stone unturned in their efforts to find a solution to the crisis.
|leave well alone||If you leave
well alone, you decide not to interfere
with or change something that is acceptable
It would be hard to get a better deal. Let's just leave well alone.
|led by the nose||Someone who is
led by the nose is dominated or
controlled by a person or group who makes
them do exactly what they want.
Jack has always been led by the nose by his mother.
left hand doesn't know what the right hand
||To say that 'the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing' means that within a group or organisation, communication is so bad that one person doesn't know what another person is doing.|
|left hanging in the air||If a problem or
issue is left hanging in the air
(or in mid-air), no decision has
been taken so it remains without a solution.
No solution was proposed during the meeting so the question was left hanging in the air.
|left to own devises||If you leave
someone to their own devices, you leave
them to look after themselves, with any help
When left to their own devices, many children watch TV and eat junk food.
|pull someone's leg||If you pull
someone's leg, you tease them by
telling them something that is not true.
Of course I'm not going to buy a sports car. I was just pulling your leg!
|(not) have leg to stand on||To say that someone
doesn't have a leg to stand on
means that they can't prove what they say.
Three people testified against him. He didn't have a leg to stand on.
|last legs||If someone or
something is on its last legs, they
are in a very weak condition or about to
stop working or die.
Our old car is on its last legs. We're going to have to invest!
|(buy) a lemon||If you buy
something, especially a car, that is
defective, unsatisfactory, constantly gives
problems or stops running after a short
time, you buy a lemon.
The car I bought was a real lemon. It broke down two weeks later.
|lend an ear||If you lend an ear to someone,
you listen carefully and sympathetically.
The best person to talk to is Jenny. She's always ready to lend an ear.
|lend oneself to||If you lend
yourself to something, you approve of
it or become associated with it.
No decent father would lend himself to violent behaviour.
|less is more||This expression,
used particularly in architecture and
design, conveys the idea that things that
are simple in style and smaller in size are
Simplicity is fashionable today. Less is more.
|lesser of two evils||If you choose
the lesser of two evils, you opt for
the less unpleasant of two poor options.
I didn't want to go. Choosing the train instead of driving was the lesser of two evils; at least I could relax on the way.
|let bygones be bygones||If you let
bygones be bygones, you decide to
forget about past disagreements.
When Charlie's son was born, he decided to let bygones be bygones and contacted his parents.
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