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English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions 


Alphabetical List of Idioms T, page 9

Idioms T, page 9:  from:   'throw in the towel'   to:   'tight spot'


  • throw in the towel
    • If you throw in the towel, you admit that you cannot succeed.
      "After unsuccessfully competing in several championships, the athlete decided to throw in the towel and go back to college."

  • throw a wobbly/wobbler
    • When someone, usually a capricious person, throws a wobbly, they have a fit of nerves or bad temper and lose all self-control.
      "He's very calm - not the sort of man to throw a wobbly if he doesn't have a clean shirt! "

  • rule of thumb
    • A rule of thumb is a general rule which is a handy way of measuring or calculating something.
      "As a rule of thumb, use one quantity of vinegar and 3 quantities of oil to make a salad dressing."

  • all thumbs
    • If you are all (fingers and) thumbs, you are awkward and clumsy and do things incorrectly.
      "Would you mind wrapping this for me? I'm all (fingers and) thumbs."

  • tick the right boxes
    • When something ticks all the right boxes, it is perfect for you because it meets your entire list of criteria.
      "We're in luck! We visited an apartment today that ticks all the right boxes!"

  • tickle the ivories
    • This is a humorous way of talking about playing the piano.
      "My grandfather loves playing the piano; he tickles the ivories whenever he can."

  • tickled pink
    • If you are tickled pink, you are very pleased about something.
      "My dad was tickled pink when he was asked to announce the winner."

  • the tide has turned
    • When a trend has changed from one thing to another, the tide has turned.
      "Before, people wanted to live in residential suburbs; now the tide has turned and warehouses are being converted into fashionable loft apartments."

  • tide over
    • If you tide someone over, you support them through a difficult period for a certain length of time.
      "With this weather it's impossible to get to the shops, but we have enough food to tide us over until next week."

  • tie the knot
    • When two people tie the knot, they get married.
      "Guess what! Tom and Sarah are finally going to tie the knot!"

  • tie yourself up in knots
    • If you tie yourself up in knots, you become totally confused or confuse others when trying to explain something.
      "Sandy tied herself up in knots trying to explain the rules of the game."

  • tied to someone's apron strings
    • A person who is tied to another's apron strings, remain dependent at an age when they should be independent.
      "All his decisions are influenced by his mother. He's still tied to her apron strings."

  • tight squeeze
    • If you are in a tight squeeze, you are in a cramped or crowded situation.
      "We managed to get on the bus but it was a tight squeeze."

  • tight spot
    • Someone who is in a tight spot is in a very difficult situation.
      "The recent strike has put the airline company in a tight spot."

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