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 English Vocabulary for ESL learners 

Commonly-used expressions.

 Expressions with KNOW 

Expression Meaning Example
As far as I know As much as you know about a matter at a particular time (although you may be mistaken). "The ceremony begins at 11 a.m. as far as I know, but I could be wrong.”
Before you know it Takes place suddenly, before you are aware of what’s happening. "The doorbell rang, and before we knew it a surprise birthday party was under way!"
Dying to know Be extremely eager to know something. “I’m going to call Eva. I’m dying to know if she got the job.”
Know better than to do something Be experienced or wise enough not to do something. "You should know better than to go sailing in stormy weather."
Know someone inside out Know someone extremely well. “Sue and Amy have been friends since childhood. They know each other inside out. ”
Know something like the back of your hand Know something in detail or be very familiar with it. "Of course I won't get lost. I know London like the back of my hand"
Know the ropes Be familiar with the way something is done and know how to do it "Charlie can fill in for Sam at any time – he knows the ropes.”
Know the score Be well-informed about a situation and know what to expect. “If Laura damages the car, her dad won't lend it to her again. She knows the score."
Know your own mind Know what you want or like and be capable of making a decision “I don’t want to influence you. You’re old enough to know your own mind.”
Know which side your bread is buttered Know where your interests lie or what can be to your advantage. "Andy never argues with his boss. He knows which side his bread is buttered."
Know which way the wind is blowing Be aware of how a situation is developing so that you can adapt to any changes. "Before we decide on anything, we need to know which way the wind is blowing.”
Not know what hit you Be so surprised, shocked or confused by something that you don't know how to react. “When I was told that I had won the competition I didn't know what hit me!"

Please note that British English spelling is used on this website.

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