IDIOMS OF THE
- a feeling of sadness that one
has when love has been lost or has faded
young woman spent the weekend alone with her
one’s own heart
- to be liked for
agreeing with one’s own feelings or interests or
My new boss loves to go fishing. He is a
man after my own heart.
essentially, what one really is rather than what
one appears to be
The man seems to be angry all
the time but actually he is a very gentle person
- someone who feels too much
sympathy for people such as poor people or
The man is a bleeding heart and
is always asked by other people for money to help
- to make someone feel
sad or hopeless (usually because of love or a
It broke my heart to see the boy
who had lost his dog.
close to (someone's)
- an idea or something that is
important to you and that you care about
plan to improve the downtown area is very close to
the mayor's heart.
one’s heart and hope to die
- to say or
promise that what you have said is true (often
used by children)
"I promise that I will meet
you tomorrow. Cross my heart and hope to
die of a broken
- to die of emotional distress, to
suffer from emotional distress (often from a
The man almost died of a broken
heart when he was a teenager.
do (someone's) heart good
to make someone feel good, to make someone
It does one's heart good to get some
exercise every day.
(something) in a heartbeat
- to do
something almost immediately if you have the
I will change jobs in a heartbeat if I
have the chance.
one’s heart out
- to feel much jealousy
about something, to feel bitter anguish or grief
"You can eat your heart out but
I will not give you a piece of this chocolate
The pain from the man's sorrow is eating
his heart out.
in one's heart to (do something)
have the courage or compassion to do
I could not find it in my heart to
tell the young woman that she could not continue
to work at our company.
follow one's heart
- to act
according to one's feelings
The boy followed
his heart and decided to study music at
from the bottom
of one’s heart
- with great feeling,
The girl thanked the man from the
bottom of her heart for saving her dog's
from the heart
The speech by the politician was from
get to the
heart of (something)
- to understand the
most important or essential thing about
It took a long time but we finally
got to the heart of the problem with the new
in a heartbeat
- to go somewhere almost
immediately if you have the chance
I would go
camping in a heartbeat if I had the
have a big
- to be very kind or generous or
The man has a big heart and he will
always try to help other people.
have a change of heart
change the way one feels or thinks about
I had a change of heart and I decided
to go to a movie with my friend.
have a heart
- to be a
generous and forgiving person
I wish that our
boss would have a heart and try to help other
- Don't be unkind or do something
mean or cruel!
"Have a heart," I told my
supervisor when he said that I must work during
heart of gold
- to be kind or generous
My grandmother has a heart of gold
and she is always willing to help a
have a heart
- to be cold and
The man who murdered his family has
a heart of stone.
heart-to-heart talk with (someone)
have a sincere and intimate talk with someone
had a heart-to-heart talk with my girlfriend last
have a soft
spot in one's heart for (someone or
- to be fond of someone or
My grandfather always had a soft spot
in his heart for his youngest child.
have one`s heart set on
- to want something very
The little boy has his heart set on
getting a dog for his birthday.
heart and soul
- with all
of one's energy, with all of one's efforts
girl loved her boyfriend heart and soul.
friend is putting his heart and soul into his new
heart bleeds for
- to feel sympathy for
My heart bleeds for the family who lost
their father in the accident.
heart goes out to
- to feel great sympathy for
My heart goes out to the victims of the
heart is dead
set against (something)
- to be totally
My mother's heart is dead set
against my plan to go to art school.
heart is in one's mouth
one feels very nervous or frightened and has
strong emotions about something
My heart was in
my mouth when I saw the little boy standing on the
heart is in the
- to be kindhearted or
sympathetic, to have good intentions (even if the
results may be bad)
Although the girl makes a
lot of mistakes her heart is in the right
heart is not in
- to not really want to do
what you are doing
The boy's heart was not in
the swimming club so he quit the
heart is set
- to be totally
Our principal's heart is set
against expanding the music program in our
heart is set on
- to want something very
The little boy's heart is set on getting a
dog for his birthday.
heart misses/skips a beat
one is startled or excited from surprise or joy or
My heart skipped a beat when I heard my
name on the radio.
- to be very frightened or
worried about something
My heart stood still
when the truck almost hit our car.
heart to heart
Our conversation was heart to heart
and we both felt very good
away from (something)
- the next person
to take over someone's position if they die
prince is a heartbeat away from becoming the next
king of his country.
- a feeling of
being weighed down with sorrow, a sad
We left the meeting with a heavy heart
when we heard that our boss would soon leave the
company because of illness.
in one's heart of hearts
to know that something is true even though you may
not want to admit it or believe it
In my heart
of hearts I know that I will soon have to change
- to know something perfectly,
to have memorized something
The little boy
knows many stories by heart.
learn (something) by
- to memorize something
children had to learn the poem by
- to feel discouraged because of
failure, to lose the hope of success
not to lose heart even though I had failed my
driver`s exam for the second time.
near to (someone's) heart
an idea or something that is important to you and
that you care about
The man's model airplane
hobby is very near to his heart.
not have the heart to do
- to be unwilling to say or
do something that may hurt or upset others
did not have the heart to tell the woman that soon
she may lose her job.
open one`s heart to
- to talk about one`s feelings
honestly, to confide in someone
suddenly opened her heart to me after I began
talking to her on the bus.
pour one's heart out (to
- to tell all of one's hopes or
fears or feelings to someone
My friend poured
her heart out to me when we went to the coffee
shop last evening.
search one`s heart/soul
to study one`s reasons and acts, to try to
discover if one has been fair and honest about
I searched my soul to try and
discover why my girlfriend had left me.
set one's heart against
- to turn against something,
to become totally against something
beginning, my friend set his heart against my
proposal for having a birthday party for our
set one's heart
- to select something as
The young runner set his heart on
winning the marathon.
sick at heart
- very sad or
upset about something
The woman was sick at
heart over the illness of her cat.
strike at the heart of
- to do something that
damages or destroys the basic idea or way of doing
something that is very important to someone or to
The decision to change the law struck
at the heart of how the people wanted to
- to be encouraged, to be
The father took heart in the fact that
his son was still going to university even though
he was failing most of his courses.
take (something) to heart
to be strongly affected by something that someone
says to you, to take something seriously, to be
upset by something
I did not expect my friend
to take my criticism to heart when I complained
that he was always late.
to one's heart's content
as much as one wants
The little boy was able to
play in the water to his heart's
- to make
someone feel very sad, to make someone feel great
sympathy for someone else
Seeing the young boy
and his dog tugged at my
cockles of (someone's) heart
- to make
someone feel warm and happy
The ending of the
movie warmed the cockles of my heart.
way to (someone's) heart
the best way to please someone or make them like
The way to my grandfather's heart was
through his stomach as he always liked good
wear one’s heart
on one’s sleeve
- to show one’s feelings
The man wore his heart on his sleeve
when he talked about his sick son.
win (someone's) heart
do nice things for someone to make him or her love
you, to have the qualities to make you like
something - music or art or a book
man won the girl's heart by his kind and caring
attitude toward her.
with all one’s heart (and
- with all one's energy and
I tried with all my heart to get my
friend a job at my company.
young at heart
things that usually younger people enjoy (usually
used for an older person)
The older couple were
young at heart and they had much fun together.
Idiom Quizzes -
Choose an idiom to replace the
expression in the brackets:
1. The man was
(very sad) about his friend's death.
wearing his heart on his sleeve (b) taking heart
(c) losing heart (d) sick at heart
2. I had (a serious) talk with my friend about
(a) a heart-to-heart (b) a
young-at-heart (c) a heavy-heart (d) a
3. The man is beginning to (feel
discouraged) because he cannot find a job.
search his heart (b) open his heart (c) lose heart
(d) wear his heart on his sleeve
4. My sister (very much wants) a new MP3 player
for her birthday.
(a) is breaking her heart for
(b) has her heart set on (c) crossed her heart and
hoped to die for (d) lost heart for
5. (The boy became very frightened) when he
went to see the horror movie.
(a) The boy's
heart stood still (b) The boy's heart was in the
right place (c) The boy's heart was of stone (d)
The boy's heart was of gold
6. The girl had a (feeling of unhappiness) when
her boyfriend left her.
(a) big heart (b)
change of heart (c) heart of gold (d) heavy
7. My friend always (talks openly about his
feelings) to me.
(a) breaks his heart (b) opens
his heart (c) searches his heart (d) crosses his
heart and hopes to die
8. The politician is usually very cold but his
recent speech was (very sincere and
(a) after my own heart (b) at heart
(c) from the heart (d) a heavy heart
9. I (was encouraged by) the fact that so many
people volunteered to help with the charity
(a) took heart from (b) broke my heart
by (c) lost heart by (d) searched my heart
10. The man has a (hard and cold
(a) heart that is in the right
place (b) change of heart (c) heart of gold (d)
heart of stone