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  1. #1
    niki6 is offline Newbie
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    Question Categories of idioms

    Hello,
    we already know that there are a lot of categories of idioms, e.g. animal, money, body,color... However, I would like to know, which category of idoms is the richest regarding the amount of idioms and which is the weakest one. And if there is some explanation for that.

    Thank you for your answer.
    Niki

  2. #2
    stanislaw.masny is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Categories of idioms

    Quote Originally Posted by niki6 View Post
    Hello,
    we already know that there are a lot of categories of idioms, e.g. animal, money, body,color... However, I would like to know, which category of idoms is the richest regarding the amount of idioms and which is the weakest one. And if there is some explanation for that.

    Thank you for your answer.
    Niki
    Hi Niki6
    I think that the most numerous are body and bodily function or animals.
    There is my felling only.
    Regards.
    S.M.

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Categories of idioms

    Idiom reflect life around us, and the lives of our ancestors, who would make comparisons with the animals they saw, their bodies, clothes, etc, as part of the immediate world, and may idioms are very old. 'Mad as a March hare' may not seem an obvious idiom to those, like me, who have lived an urban life and rarely see hares at any time of the year, but in older times, more people lived on the land.

    There are figures given for each category in our list here: Categories of English Idioms - UsingEnglish.com
    Body (425) and animals (319) are way ahead- the next is money (95).

    This is not a scientific measure as the list is far from complete and there are often questions about which category to use, especially where there are two or more possibilities- for instance, 'on cloud 9', where we have to choose between numbers and the weather. (At the moment, we can only choose one category) However the fact that two groups do stand out by such a wide margin does suggest that they are probably the most common. As physical beings in a world with animals around us, who behave in set ways, it seems logical that we have so many of these.

    I wouldn't make any claims for the value of the data at the bottom of the list- the figures are simply too small to suggest any sort of accuracy or meaning IMO.

  4. #4
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    Exclamation Re: Categories of idioms

    Yes, I think that most idioms are related to parts of the body and animals. May be this is because these are the most obvious elements a language speaker would use to talk and describe what's around...But these are just my impressions. In fact, this would be an interesting topic of research for linguists and sociolinguists.

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