English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions

Showing 1-50 of 181 results for letter 'O'
Object lesson
An object lesson serves as a warning to others. (In some varieties of English 'abject lesson' is used.)
Odds and ends
Odds and ends are small, remnant articles and things- the same as 'bits and bobs'.
Off colour
If someone looks off colour/color, they look ill.
Off like a shot
If someone is off like a shot, they leave or get going very quickly indeed.
Off on one
(UK) If someone goes off on one, they get extremely angry indeed.
Off the beaten track
Somewhere that's off the beaten track is in a remote location.
Off the chart
If something goes off the chart, it far exceeds the normal standards, good or bad, for something.
Off the cuff
If you do something off the cuff, you do it without any preparation.
Off the grid
Someone who is off the grid lives outside society and chooses not to follow its rules and conventions.
Off the hook
If someone is off the hook, they have avoided punishment or criticism for something they have done.
Off the mark
If something is off the mark, it is inaccurate or incorrect.
Off the rails
If someone has gone off the rails, they have lost track of reality.
Off the record
Something off the record is said in confidence because the speaker doesn't want it attributed to them, especially when talking to the media.
Off the scale
If something goes off the scale, it far exceeds the normal standards, good or bad, for something.
Off the shelf
If a product is off the shelf, it can be used straightaway without any setting-up.
Off the top of your head
If you say something off the top of your head, you don't think about it beforehand.
Off the track
If something puts or throws you off your track, it distracts you or keeps you from achieving what you want.
Off the wall
Something that is off the wall is unconventional.
Off your chump
(UK) If someone is off their chump, they are crazy or irrational.
Off your guard
If you catch someone off their guard, they  are not ready or prepared when you do or say something.('Take somoene off their guard' is also used.)
Off your rocker
(UK) Someone who is off their rocker is crazy.
Off-hand
Off-hand means without preparation. People say that they don't know the answer off-hand, meaning that they don't know it at that time.
Oh, my goodness!
An expression of surprise.
Old chestnut
An old chestnut is something that has been repeated so many times that it has lost its impact.
Old flames die hard
It's very difficult to forget old things, especially the first love.
Old friends and old wine are best
This idiom means that the things and people that we know well are better than the unfamiliar.
Old hat
If something's old hat, it seems rather old fashioned and dated.
Old wives' tale
A proverb or piece of advice that is commonly accepted as truth and is handed down the generations, but is sometimes false.
Older than dirt
Something or someone's that's older than the dirt is extremely old.
Older than dirt
Something or someone that's older than dirt is very old indeed.
Older than the hills
Something or someone's that's older than the hills is extremely old.
Oldest trick in the book
The oldest trick in the book is a well-known way of deceiving someone, though still effective.
Olive branch
If you hold out or offer an olive branch, you make a gesture to indicate that you want peace.
On a fishing expedition
If someone is on a fishing expedition, they are trying to get information, often using incorrect or improper ways to find things out.
On a mission
Being on a mission refers to acting in a determined way and so focus in doing something that he/she is oblivious of anything else around him/her.
On a razor edge
If something is on a razor edge, it it is in a risky situation and the outcome is very uncertain.
On a roll
If you're on a roll, you're moving from success to success.
On a shoogly peg
(Scot) Something, like a person's job, that's on a shoogly peg is insecure.
On a silver platter
If you hand or give something on a silver platter to someone, you let them have it too easily.
On all fours
If someone is on all fours, they crawl.
On board
If someone is on board, they support or are working for or with a company, person, etc.
On Carey Street
(UK) If someone is on Carey Street, they are heavily in debt or have gone bankrupt.
On fire
If you're on fire, you're doing really well at something.
On good terms
If people are on good terms, they have a good relationship.
On hold
If something is on hold, no action is being taken.
On ice
If plans are put on ice, they are delayed and no action will be taken for the foreseeable future.
On my back
If people are on your back, they are bothering or nagging you.
On my watch
If someoething happens on your watch, you are responsible for it as you were in charge.
On pins and needles
If you are on pins and needles, you are very worried about something.
On tenterhooks
This means that she is waiting impatiently and excitedly for something.

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