The most popular idioms or proverbs

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bmo

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What would you say are the five most popular idioms or proverbs in use today? Would "Raining cats and dogs " be one of them?

Thanks.

BMO
 

RonBee

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I am not at all sure what the most popular idiom is, but I am sure it is not raining cats and dogs, perhaps because it doesn't rain that hard that often.

:)
 

RonBee

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How about:
  • It takes two to tango.
Or:
  • Kill two birds with one stone.

:?:
 

Tdol

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'Raining cats and dogs' is a strange idiom- every student in the world knows it, yet I never hear any native speaker use it here in the UK.;-)
 
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Susie Smith

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tdol said:
'Raining cats and dogs' is a strange idiom- every student in the world knows it, yet I never hear any native speaker use it here in the UK.;-)

What do you say when it's pouring?
 

Tdol

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It's pouring, chucking it down, or p*ss*ng it down. :lol:
 

Tdol

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We do say that and just 'coming down'. ;-)
 
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Susie Smith

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tdol said:
We do say that and just 'coming down'. ;-)


I say it's coming down hard or pouring, but I've heard a lot of native Americans say it's raining cats and dogs, mostly the "older" generation, I guess. Brazilians say "it's raining pocketknives", which makes more sense than cats and dogs, at least to me. It's interesting how an idiom varies from country to country, isn't it? I myself love idioms. They make languages so much more colorful, especially when you hear one that is not so common.
 

Beeuurkes

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"When the pigs will begin to fly". Is it a common idiom in English ?
Or is it just the same as "It's raining cats and dogs" : well-known abroad but never used ?
In French, the equivalent idiom is very often used (at least in Belgium) and sounds like this :
"When the hens will have teeth". :wink:
 

RonBee

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"I'll do that when pigs fly" (or some variation of that) means that the speaker believes that it (whatever "it" is) will never happen.

:)
 

RonBee

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Beeuurkes said:
Than, you tends to use that idiom, don't you ?
  • Then you tend to use that idiom, don't you?

I don't remember ever using it, but I might have. I'm sure I have heard it.

:)
 

Beeuurkes

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Idiom : "When pigs fly"

RonBee said:
I'm sure I have heard it.

Thank you RonBee, that's all I wanted to know. :wink:
It's one of my favourite. I use it quite often in French.
 

RonBee

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You're quite welcome.

:D
 
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Susie Smith

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Re: Idiom : "When pigs fly"

Beeuurkes said:
RonBee said:
I'm sure I have heard it.

Thank you RonBee, that's all I wanted to know. :wink:
It's one of my favourite. I use it quite often in French.

Brazilians use an identical expression: "quando as galinhas criarem/tiverem dentes" (when the hens grow/have teeth)

There's another Brazilian one with a similar meaning - "no dia de São Nunca" (on St. Never's Day) Do you have that one in French too?

In English, when we think something will never happen, a common response might be "That'll be the day!". There's a better one on the tip of my tongue. I know it's there - I can feel it there - but I just can't remember it. Help, please"
 

Beeuurkes

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Re: Idiom : "When pigs fly"

Susie Smith said:
There's another Brazilian one with a similar meaning - "no dia de São Nunca" (on St. Never's Day) Do you have that one in French too?

Yes, we have that one : "la semaine des quatre jeudi" or "The 4 Thursday week" or something like that.
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Firelord

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bmo said:
What would you say are the five most popular idioms or proverbs in use today? Would "Raining cats and dogs " be one of them?

Thanks.

BMO

raining cats and dogs?!
i don't know this idiom!
what's it talks about?
 

Tdol

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It means 'raining heavily'.

To rain cats and dogs (c.1652) is probably an extension of cats and dogs as proverbial for "strife, enmity" (1579)
http://www.etymonline.com/c2etym.htm

I have also heard that it refers to winds, but cannot find my source at the moment- I have to search my house. ;-)
 

RonBee

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Never has it rained cats and dogs,
But sometimes it rains frogs.

:wink:
 
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