English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
Alphabetical List - N
|nine-day wonder||An event which is
a nine-day wonder causes interest,
surprise or excitement for a short time, but
it doesn't last.
His sudden departure was a nine-day wonder but he was soon forgotten.
|nine times out of ten||When something
happens nine times out of ten, it
is what usually happens.
The public transport system is very bad. Trains arrive late nine times out of ten.
|on cloud nine||A person who is
on cloud nine is very happy because
something wonderful has happened.
When the boss announced my promotion, I was on cloud nine!
|dressed up to nines||To describe someone
as dressed up to the nines means
that they are wearing very smart or
Caroline must be going to a party - she's dressed up to the nines.
|talk nineteen to the dozen||Someone who
talks nineteen to the dozen speaks very
He was talking nineteen to the dozen so I didn't catch the whole story.
|nitty-gritty||When people get
down to the nitty-gritty, they begin to
discuss the most important points or the
I was interested in the project, but we didn't get down to the nitty-gritty until his partner arrived.
|no accounting for taste||This expression is
used to indicate surprise at another
person's likes or dislikes.
She fell in love with a guy who's short, fat, bald and poor ... there's no accounting for taste!
|no-brainer||A decision or
choice that requires little or no thought,
because the best option is so obvious, is
called a no-brainer.
The choice was between a cash refund or having the amount credited to my account - it was a no-brainer! I took the cash!
|no dice||If someone asks you
for something and you reply 'no dice!',
you mean that it is impossible or it can't
"Can you lend me your car?" "Sorry, no dice!"
expression is another way of saying 'very
Aunt Bessie was pleased no end to be invited to your wedding.
|no fixed abode||A person of no
fixed abode has nowhere permanent to
A 30-year-old man of no fixed abode was charged with the burglary.
|no-go area||A no-go area
is an area, particularly in a city, where it
is dangerous to go.
Tourists have been advised to avoid parts of the city which have become no-go areas.
|no great shakes||To say that someone
or something is no great shakes
means that they are useless, ineffective or
not very good.
He's a good actor but his last film was no great shakes.
|no hard feelings||If you have no
hard feelings, you feel no resentment
or bitterness about something.
When Alan was promoted instead of Steve, he said to Steve : 'No hard feelings I hope.'
alphabetical lists N ...
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