English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions

Showing 151-200 of 206 results for letter 'H'
Hold the wire
If you ask someone on the telephone to hold the wire, you want them to wait and not hang up.
Hold water
When you say that something does or does not 'hold water', it means that the point of view or argument put forward is or is not sound, strong or logical. For e.g., 'Saying we should increase our interest rates because everyone else is doing so will not hold water'.
Hold your hands up
(UK) If you hold your hands up, you accept responsibility for something you have done wrong.
Hold your horses
If someone tells you to hold your horses, you are doing something too fast and they would like you to slow down.
Hold your own
If you can hold your own, you can compete or perform equally with other people.
Hold your tongue
If you hold your tongue, you keep silent even though you want to speak.
Holier-than-thou
Someone who is holier-than-thou believes that they are morally superior to other people.
Hollow leg
Someone who has a hollow leg eats what seems to be more than his stomach can hold.
Hollow victory
A hollow victory is where someone wins something in name, but are seen not to have gained anything by winning.
Holy smoke!
This is a way of expressing surprise: "Holy smoke! Look at all of those geese!"
Home and hearth
'Home and hearth' is an idiom evoking warmth and security.
Home is where you lay your hat
Wherever you are comfortable and at ease with yourself is your home, regardless where you were born or brought up.('Home is where you lay your head'  and 'Home is where you hang your hat' are also used.)
Home stretch
The home stretch is the last part of something, like a journey, race or project.
Home sweet home
This is said when one is pleased to be back at one's own home.
Home, James
(UK) This is a cliched way of telling the driver of a vehicle to start driving. It is supposed to be an order to a chauffeur (a privately employed driver).  The full phrase is 'Home, James, and don't spare the horses'.
Honest as the day is long
Someone who is as honest as the day is long is very trustworthy or honest.
Honest truth
If someone claims that something is the honest truth, they wish to sound extra-sincere about something.
Honor among thieves
If someone says there is honor among thieves, this means that even corrupt or bad people sometimes have a sense of honor or integrity, or justice, even if it is skewed.  ('Honour among thieves' is the British English version.)
Honours are even
If honours are even, then a competition has ended with neither side emerging as a winner.
Hook, line, and sinker
If somebody accepts or believes something hook, line, and sinker, they accept it completely.
Hooked
You're hooked when you're obsessed with or addicted to something.
Hop, skip, and a jump
If a place is a hop, skip, and a jump from somewhere, it's only a short distance away.
Hope against hope
If you hope against hope, you hope for something even though there is little or no chance of your wish being fulfilled.
Hope in hell
If something hasn't got a hope in hell, it stands absolutely no chance of succeeding.
Hopping mad
If you're hopping mad, you are extremely angry.
Hornets' nest
A hornets' nest is a violent situation or one with a lot of dispute. (If you create the problem, you 'stir up a hornets' nest'.)
Horns of a dilemma
If you are on the horns of a dilemma, you are faced with two equally unpleasant options and have to choose one.
Horse of a different color
(USA) If something is a horse of a different color, it's a different matter or separate issue altogether.
Horse trading
Horse trading is an idiom used to describe negotiations, especially where these are difficult and involve a lot of compromise.
Horses for courses
Horses for courses means that what is suitable for one person or situation might be unsuitable for another.
Hostile takeover
If a company is bought out when it does not want to be, it is known as a hostile takeover.
Hot air
Language that is full of words but means little or nothing is hot air.
Hot as blue blazes
If something's as hot as blue blazes, it's extremely hot.
Hot as Hades
If something's as hot as Hades, it's extremely hot.
Hot button
(USA) A hot button is a topic or issue that people feel very strongly about.
Hot foot
If you hot foot it out of a place, you leave very quickly, often running.
Hot potato
A problem or issue that is very controversial and no one wants to deal with is a hot potato.
Hot ticket
(USA) A hot ticket is something that is very much in demand at the moment.
Hot to trot
If someone is hot to trot, they are sexually aroused or eager to do something.
Hot under the collar
If you're hot under the collar, you're feeling angry or bothered.
Hot water
If you get into hot water, you get into trouble.
Hot-blooded
Someone who is hot-blooded is easily excitable or passionate.
Hot-headed
A hot-headed person gets angry very easily. (The noun 'hothead' can also be used.)
Hour of need
A time when someone really needs something, almost a last chance, is their hour of need.
House of cards
Something that is poorly thought out and can easily collapse or fail is a house of cards.
How come
If you want to show disbelief or surprise about an action, you can ask a question using 'how come'. How come he got the job? (You can't believe that they gave the job to somebody like him)
How do you like them apples
(USA) This idiomatic expression is used to express surprise or shock at something that has happened. It can also be used to boast about something you have done.
How long is a piece of string
If someone has no idea of the answer to a question, they can ask 'How long is a piece of string?' as a way of indicating their ignorance.
How the hog ate the cabbage
(USA) If you tell someone how the hog ate the cabbage, it means you tell it like it is- tell someone the truth that they probably don't want to hear.
How's tricks?
This is used as a way of asking people how they are and how things have been going in their life.

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