Idioms Beginning With: 'S'
results for letter 'S
- Snake oil salesperson
- A person who promotes something that doesn't work, is selling snake oil.
- Snipe hunt
- A snipe hunt is a situation in which someone is tricked into chasing after something that does not exist. The origin comes from a hazing ritual in which someone would be led into the field to catch snipe (an imaginary animal) in a sack while the other hunters pushed the snipe in that direction. The other hunters would in reality leave the hunter there and go on their way.
- Snug as a bug in a rug
- If you're as snug as a bug in a rug, you are feeling very comfortable indeed.
- So it goes
- This idiom is used to be fatalistic and accepting when something goes wrong.
- So on and so forth
- And so on and so forth mean the same as etcetera (etc.).
- So what
- Impolite reply showing that the speaker is not impressed by what has been said. ex: So what? Why should I care?
- Social butterfly
- Someone who can move easily within many different social groups is a social butterfly.
- Sod's law
- Sod's law states that if something can go wrong then it will.
- Soft shoe
- Speaking to someone or a speech given in a gentle or conciliatory way.
- Soft soap someone
- If you soft soap someone, you flatter them.
- Some other time
- If somebody says they'll do something some other time, they mean at some indefinite time in the future, possibly never, but they certainly don't want to feel obliged to fix a specific time or date.
- Something nasty in the woodshed
- Something nasty in the woodshed means that someone as a dark secret or an unpleasant experience in their past.
- Sore loser
- A sore loser is a person who does not take loss or failure well, especially if they complain about it or try to dispute it.
- Sound as a bell
- If something or someone is as sound as a bell, they are very healthy or in very good condition.
- Sound as a pound
- (UK) if something is as sound as a pound, it is very good or reliable.
- Sour grapes
- When someone says something critical or negative because they are jealous, it is a case of sour grapes.
- Sow the seeds
- When people sow the seeds, they start something that will have a much greater impact in the future.
- Sow your wild oats
- If a young man sows his wild oats, he has a period of his life when he does a lot of exciting things and has a lot of sexual relationships. for e.g. He'd spent his twenties sowing his wild oats but felt that it was time to settle down.
- Spanish practices
- Unauthorized working methods that benefit those who follow them are Spanish practices.
- Spanner in the works
- (UK) If someone puts or throws a spanner in the works, they ruin a plan.
In American English, 'wrench' is used instead of 'spanner'.
- Spare the rod and spoil the child
- This means that if you don't discipline children, they will become spoilt.
- Speak of the devil!
- If you are talking about someone and they happen to walk in, you can use this idiom as a way of letting them know you were talking about them.
- Speak softly and carry a big stick
- If you speak softly and carry a big stick, you make your case quietly but can back it up forcefully if necessary.
- Speak to the organ grinder not the monkey
- Talk to the boss not the subordinate
- Speak volumes
- If something speaks volumes, it tells us a lot about the real nature of something or someone,even though it may only be a small detail.
- Speak with a forked tongue
- To say one thing and mean another, to lie, to be two-faced
- Speak your mind
- If you speak your mind, you say what you exactly think about a subject regardless of whether others will agree with you or not.
- Spend a penny
- (UK) This is a euphemistic idiom meaning to go to the toilet.
- Spend like a sailor
- Someone who spends their money wildly spends like a sailor.
- Spice of life
- The spice of life is something that makes it feel worth living.
- Spick and span
- If a room is spick and span, it is very clean and tidy.
- Spike your guns
- If you spike someone's guns, you ruin their plans.
- Spill the beans
- If you spill the beans, you reveal a secret or confess to something.
- Spin a yarn
- If someone spins a yarn, they tell a story, usually a long or fanciful one.
- Spinning a line
- When someone spins you a line, they are trying to deceive you by lying.
- Spinning a yarn
- When someone spins you a yarn, they are trying to deceive you by lying.
- Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak
- If the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak, someone lacks the willpower to change things they do because they derive too much pleasure from them.
- Spirit of the law
- The spirit of the law is the idea or ideas that the people who made the law wanted to have effect.
- Spit blood
- If someone is spitting blood, they are absolutely furious.
- Spit it out
- People say this when someone has something to say but is too embarrassed, shy, etc, to say it.
- Spit nails
- If someone is spitting nails, they are speaking or behaving in an extremely angry way.('Spit tacks' is also used.)
- Spit the dummy
- Reference to an infant spitting out their dummy (or pacifier) in order to cry. 'To spit the dummy' is to give up.
- Spitting image
- If a person is the spitting image of somebody, they look exactly alike.('Spit and image' is also used and some suggest it is a hasty pronunciation of "spirit & image", to suggest that someone completely resembles someone else. Example: He's the spirit & image of his grandfather.)
- Split hairs
- If people split hairs, they concentrate on tiny and unimportant details to find fault with something.
- Split the blanket
- If people split the blanket, it means they get a divorce or end their relationship.
- Spoil the ship for a ha'pworth of tar
- (UK) If someone spoils the ship for a ha'pworth (halfpenny's worth) of tar, they spoil something completely by trying to make a small economy.
- Spoilt for choice
- When you have too many possibilities, and all of them good, you are spoilt for choice.
- If you are spoon-fed, you are given so much information that you don't have to try to find out the answers yourself.
- Spot on
- If something is spot on, it is exactly right.
- Sprat to catch a mackerel
- If you use a sprat to catch a mackerel, you make a small expenditure or take a small risk in the hope of a much greater gain.
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