The Oxford Dictionary of Idioms presents more than 5,000 idioms explaining the meaning and origin of metaphorical phrases, similes, sayings, and proverbs from throughout the English-speaking world. Full of fascinating and surprising facts, this dictionary is the perfect guide for everyone with an interest in this most colourful and quirky aspect of the English language.
- Completely revised based on the evidence of Oxford’s ongoing language research.
- More than 350 new idioms and hundreds of new origin notes.
- Thousands of real examples both modern and historical.
Easy to use, arranged alphabetically by keyword, with an elegant new design.
- Thematic index groups idioms by topic or theme: from Death and Fate to Beauty and Love.
Also Read: English Verbs
Oxford Dictionary Idioms
The aim of the Oxford Dictionary of Idioms is to provide clear definitions of phrases and sayings for those who do not know what they mean, but also to offer the curious reader interesting facts about the origins of phrases and examples of their use.
This second edition of the Oxford Dictionary of Idioms is based on the first edition, edited by Jennifer Speake. It maintains the first edition’s focus on contemporary and historical phrases, sayings, and proverbs, and uses a combination of definition and (where required) explanatory note and illustrative quotation to provide a rounded picture of idiomatic usage.
The coverage of the previous edition has been extended by the inclusion of more than 350 new idioms, and a great many contemporary illustrative quotations have also been added. These quotations have been taken from a variety of sources: from novels to travel guides, broadsheet newspapers to teenage magazines.
They help to give the reader a better understanding of how an idiom is used: a typical context, a certain tone, or a particular resonance. The formation of new phrases and sayings is one of the most colourful aspects of language development, and by adding idioms such as chew the scenery, be in like Flynn, and give someone the hairy eyeball, and quotations from the likes of Anthony Bourdain, Arundhati Roy, Melvin Burgess, and Tom Clancy, the new edition hopes to reflect this colour.
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