Idioms & Phrases Asked in Different Competitive Exams in Different years – 3

  1. To keep the wolf from the door – Escape starvation (CPO, 2011)
  2. Soft option – Easy and agreeable option (CPO, 2011)
  3. A little gush of gratitude – Excessive enthusiasm (FCI, 2012)
  4. To lose ground – To become less popular (FCI, 2012)
  5. To fall back on – to fail to do something important in time (FCI, 2012)
  6. To make one’s blood boil – To make somebody furious (FCI, 2012)
  7. Wear and tear - Damage (FCI, 2012)
  8. To add fuel to the fire – To cause additional anger (FCI, 2012)
  9. Hand in glove – In close relationship (FCI, 2012)
  10. To make a mountain of a molehill – To give great importance to little things (FCI, 2012)
  11. To speak one’s mind – To be frank and honest (FCI, 2012)
  12. Maiden speech – First speech (DEO, 2008)
  13. At the eleventh hour – At the very last moment (DEO, 2008)
  14. Cope with - compromise (DEO, 2008)
  15. Go a long way – help considerably (DEO, 2008)
  16. Gift of the gab – talent of speaking (DEO, 2008)
  17. Standstill – Complete halt (DEO, 2008)
  18. Cross swords - Disagree (DEO, 2008)
  19. Pore over – Go through (DEO, 2008)
  20. Make both ends meet – To live a lavish life (DEO, 2008)
  21. Run down - Criticise (DEO, 2008)
  22. Grease anybody’s palm – To give bribe (Stenographer, 2010)
  23. Leave in the lurch – Abandon in the midway/difficult situation (Stenographer, 2010)
  24. Caught red handed – At the time of committing crime (Stenographer, 2010)
  25. On the brink of – On the point of (Stenographer, 2010)
  26. Face the music – Face the unpleasant consequences (Stenographer, 2010)
  27. Gift of the gab – Ability to speak impressively (Stenographer, 2010)
  28. Go down the drain – Lose forever (Stenographer, 2010)
  29. A close shave – Narrow escape from danger (Stenographer, 2010)
  30. Cool as cucumber – Not nervous or emotional (Stenographer, 2010)
  31. In high spirits - Cheerful (Stenographer, 2010)
  32. Scapegoats - A person who is blamed for the wrongdoings with arrogant reactions (CHSL,
2010)
  1. A red letter day – A day memorable for joyful event (CHSL, 2010)
  2. Wears heart on sleeves – Express feelings openly (CHSL, 2010)
  3. To pay off old scores – To refund old dues (CHSL, 2010)
  4. Man of letters – Proficient in literary arts (CHSL, 2010)
  5. Turn down - Refuse (CHSL, 2010)
  6. On good terms – Agree with someone (CHSL, 2010)
  7. Stole the show – Win everyone’s praise (CHSL, 2010)
  8. Measure up – Reach the level (CHSL, 2010)
  9. Doctor the accounts – To manipulate the accounts (CHSL, 2010)
  10. Dark horse – An unexpected winner (CHSL, 2010)
  11. Face the music – To bear the criticism (CHSL, 2010)
  12. In the red – Losing money/to owe money (CHSL, 2010)
  13. In lieu of – Despite of (CHSL, 2010)
  14. Beat about the bush – Speak in a round about manner (CHSL, 2010)
  15. Bring about - Cause (Stenographer, 2011)
  16. Pull up - Reprimand (Stenographer, 2011)
  17. At sixes and seven – In disorder or confusion (Stenographer, 2011)
  18. Lose head – Panic (Stenographer, 2011)
  19. Take to task – To criticize severely/ to punish (Stenographer, 2011)
  1. Leave in the lurch – To desert someone (Stenographer, 2011)
  2. Cry over spilt milk – Cry over irreparable loss (Stenographer, 2011)
  3. Bad blood – Active enmity (Stenographer, 2011)
  4. Close shave – A narrow escape (Stenographer, 2011)
  5. Grease palms – To bribe someone (MT(NT), 2011)
  6. Carrot and stick – Reward and punishment policy (MT(NT), 2011)
  7. To cut teeth – To gain experience of something for the first time (MT(NT), 2011)
  8. Cut no ice – Had no influence (MT(NT), 2011)
  9. Close the book - Stop working on something (MT(NT), 2011)
  10. In fits and starts - Irregularly (MT(NT), 2011)
  11. Bird’s eye view – An overview (MT(NT), 2011)
  12. Run in the same groove – Clash with each other (MT(NT), 2011)
  13. Keep your head – Remain calm (MT(NT), 2011)
  14. Pull strings – Use personal influence (MT(NT), 2011)
  15. Pot luck dinner – Dinner where somebody brings something to eat (Stenographer, 2011)
  16. To hit below the belt – To attack unfairly (Stenographer, 2011)
  17. All at sea - Puzzled (Stenographer, 2011)
  18. Sought after – Wanted by many people because it’s of good quality or difficult to
find/Pursued by (Stenographer, 2011)
  1. Build castle in the air - Daydreaming (Stenographer, 2011)
  2. On the spur of the moment – To act suddenly, without planning (CHSL, 2011)
  3. To have something up one’s sleeve – To have a secret plan (CHSL, 2011)
  4. A red letter day – An important or joyful occasion in one’s life (CHSL, 2011)
  5. To explore every avenue – To try every opportunity (CHSL, 2011)
  1. By fair or foul means – In honest or dishonest way (CHSL, 2011)
  2. Status quo – As it is/ unchanged position (CHSL, 2011)
  3. To burn candle at both ends – To be extravagant/ Spend without any worry (CHSL, 2011)
  4. To hit the jackpot – To make money quickly (CHSL, 2011)
  5. To bring to light – to reveal (CHSL, 2011)
  6. At the eleventh hour – At the last possible moment (CHSL, 2011)
  7. Go scot-free – To escape without punishment (CHSL, 2011)
  8. To shed crocodile tears – To pretend grief (CHSL, 2011)
  9. To look down one’s nose – To regard with contempt (CHSL, 2011)
  10. To miss the bus – To miss an opportunity (CHSL, 2011)
  11. A white elephant – Costly and troublesome possession, with much use to its owner (CHSL, 2011)
  1. To call spade a spade – To be frank (CHSL, 2011)
  2. To fight tooth and nail – To fight heroically, in very determined way (CHSL, 2011)
  3. Birds of same feather – Persons of same character (CHSL, 2011)
  4. Take exception – To object over something (CHSL, 2011)
  5. High handed – Using authority in an unreasonable way, overbearing (CHSL, 2011)
  1. By leaps and bounds – Rapidly (CHSL, 2011)
  2. An open book – Straight forward and honest dealings (CHSL, 2011)
  3. Fall short – Fail to meet expectation/ have no effect (CHSL, 2011)
  4. Heart to heart talk – Frank talk (CHSL, 2011)
  5. Give the game away – Give out the secret(unintentionally) (CHSL, 2011)
  1. Call for – To ask (CHSL, 2011)
  2. Out of the question – Undesirable/ Not worth discussing (CHSL, 2011)
  3. Run into – To meet someone accidently (CHSL, 2011)
  4. End up in something – Come to nothing/ Useless (CHSL, 2011)
  5. Spread like fire – Spread rapidly (CHSL, 2011)
  6. Ins and outs – Full details (CHSL, 2011)
  7. Dropping like flies – Collapsing in large numbers (CHSL, 2011)
  8. Rat race – Fierce competition for power (CHSL, 2011)
  9. Hard nut to crack – Difficult task (CHSL, 2011)
  10. See eye to eye – To think in same way (CHSL, 2011)
  11. Put across – To communicate your ideas, feelings, etc. successfully. (CHSL, 2011)
  12. To have second thoughts – To reconsider (Constable, 2012)
  13. Not my cup of tea – Not what somebody likes or interested in (Constable, 2012)
  14. To break the ice – To start a conversation (Constable, 2012)
  15. To eat a humble pie – To say or show sorry for a mistake that one made (Constable, 2012)
  16. To add fuel to fire – To worsen the matter / To incite (CPO, 2012)
  17. To burn one’s fingers – To get physically hurt (CPO, 2012)
  18. At the eleventh hour – At the last moment (CPO, 2012)
  19. To feel like a fish out of water – Uncomfortable situation (CPO, 2012)
  20. To foam at one’s mouth – To be very angry (CPO, 2012)
  1. Kick up a row - Make a great fuss / To complain loudly about something (CGL T-2, 2012)
  2. Wet behind the ears – Young and without experience / Naïve (CGL T-2, 2012)
  3. To talk someone over – To convince over (CGL T-2, 2012)
  4. Wear heart on sleeves – Express emotions freely (CGL T-2, 2012)
  1. Once in a blue moon - Rarely (CGL T-2, 2012)
  2. Through thick and thin – Under all circumstances (CGL T-2, 2012)
  3. Come to grief – To suffer (CGL T-2, 2012)
  4. Eat anyone’s salt – To be anyone’s guest (CGL T-2, 2012)
  5. Give a hand with – To help with (CPO, 2012)
  1. Had better – used for telling somebody what you think he ‘should’ do (CPO, 2012)
  2. Strike a bargain – To negotiate a deal (CPO, 2012)
  3. Point blank – Very definite and direct (CPO, 2012)
  1. Kicking heels – To be relaxed and enjoy / Waste time (CPO, 2012)
  2. End in smoke – Come to nothing (CPO, 2012)
  3. Die in harness – Die in service/ Die while working (CPO, 2012)
  1. Hold your tongue – To be silent (CHSL, 2012)
  2. No hard and fast rules – Easy regulation (CHSL, 2012)
  3. Live from hand to mouth - Miserably (CHSL, 2012)
  4. Turn a deaf ear – Refuse to obey (CHSL, 2012)
  5. Take exception – To object (CHSL, 2012)
  6. To hail from – To come from (CHSL, 2012)
  7. To put an end to - Stop (CHSL, 2012)
  8. By fits and starts - Irregularly (CHSL, 2012)
  9. Bad blood – Feeling of hatred (CHSL, 2012)
  10. Turn up – To appear (CHSL, 2012)
  11. Die hard – unwilling to change (CHSL, 2012)
  12. Turn down - Reject (CHSL, 2012)
  13. To pass away - Die (CHSL, 2012)
  14. Carry weight – Be important / Important influence (CHSL, 2012)
  15. Fall flat – Fail to amuse people / Fail to produce intended effect(CHSL, 2012)
  16. Under the thumb of – Under the control of (CHSL, 2012)
  17. To get wind – Come to know about something secret or private (CHSL, 2012)
  18. Part and parcel – An essential part of something (CHSL, 2012)
  19. To give vent to – To express a feeling, especially anger, strongly (CHSL, 2012)
  20. Stand by – To help/support somebody or be friend, even in difficult times (CHSL, 2012)
  21. In black and white – In writing (CHSL, 2012)
  22. At a loss – Unable / Not knowing about what to do or say (CHSL, 2012)
  23. Lame excuse – Unsatisfactory explanation (CHSL, 2012)
  24. Hand in glove – Working closely with someone / Very intimate (CHSL, 2012)
  25. A hard nut to crack – A difficult problem or situation to solve or deal with (CHSL, 2012)
  26. For better or worse - Always (CHSL, 2012)
  27. From the bottom of one’s heart – To speak frankly (CHSL, 2012)
  28. In a nutshell - Brief (CHSL, 2012)
  29. A shot in the dark – An attempt to guess something (CHSL, 2012)
  30. At the eleventh hour – At a last moment (CHSL, 2012)
  1. Stick to guns – Hold on to original decisions (CHSL, 2012)
  2. Out of hand – Out of control, at once, immediately (CHSL, 2012)
  3. The salt of the earth – Very good and honest/ Kind (CHSL, 2012)
  4. Talking through hat – Talking nonsense (CHSL, 2012)
  5. Looking forward to – To expect something or someone (FCI, 2012)
  6. Slip off – Leave quietly (FCI, 2012)
  7. Get on well – Have a friendly relationship (FCI, 2012)
  8. In a pickle – In an embarrassing or awkward situation (FCI, 2012)
  9. Under a cloud – Being subject to suspicion (FCI, 2012)
  10. As hard as nail – Emotionless / To show no sympathy, kindness or fear (CGL, 2012)
  11. Allow a free hand – Complete liberty (CGL, 2012)
  12. Lays out – To spend money (CGL, 2012)
  13. Break down – To lose control of your feelings and start crying / Could not proceed (CGL, 2012)
  1. Cut coat according to one’s cloth – Live within your means (CGL, 2012)
  2. Weal and woe – Ups and downs (CPO, 2012)
  3. Iron will – Strong determination (CPO, 2012)
  4. To take to task - Punish (CPO, 2012)
  5. Rack and ruin - Ransacked (CPO, 2012)
  6. Rides the high horse – Feel superior (CPO, 2012)
  7. By fits and starts – Irregularly (MTS, 2013)
  8. Has a bee in one’s bonnet – To be preoccupied or obsessed with something (MTS, 2013)
  9. See through – Detect / To realize the truth about someone or somebody (MTS, 2013)
  10. Take after – To follow / To take care of older members of family (MTS, 2013)
  1. Stand by - Support (MTS, 2013)
  2. Bull in a China shop – A clumsy person (MTS, 2013)
  3. Change colours – To turn pale (MTS, 2013)
  4.  Spick and span – Neat and clean / Tidy (MTS, 2013)
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