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These expressions you simply have to learn, and thus the title of this lesson is a little bit of a misnomer.I am going to teach you about idioms and will describe for you how they're put together and some of the more common ones, but the fact is that all of the idioms in English are too numerous to list in any 10-minute lesson.In this case, the pronoun that is the object must come between the verb and the preposition. As in, 'I've been meaning to look you up.' where 'look up' is the separable phrasal verb, and 'you' is the pronoun/object.
This can be expressed as one complete expression, as in, 'I had to hold up the meeting, because the office had disappeared' (in this case 'the meeting' is the object), or separated with the object between the verb (hold) and preposition (up), as in 'I had to hold the meeting up because the office had disappeared.' In both cases, the phrasal verb's meaning remains the same.
With an instinctive agility he could muster but could not explain he hauled himself out of the window in a flash just as the roof came down in a terrifying rain of steel and wood and splinters. Wouldn’t you now want to read about the modern-day Nero in a checkered lungi (you poor king! Those idiomatic phrases, those clichés – that’s what was wrong.
He stood outside his chawl in a singlet over a checkered lungi and watched the debris accumulate just as lights came on in the neighborhood. It’s okay in regular prose not in creative writing simply because it is not your creation.
Those are somebody else’s words, not yours and those have been said before. W Fowler calls these “verbal twins”) At the drop of a hat ~ As luck would have it ~ At the end of the day ~ The bottom line is ~ Every dog has its day ~ From time immemorial ~ No prizes for guessing why ~ Who would have thought ~ From time immemorial ~ Gone are the days ~ The last straw ~ The Ball is in your court (what ball?!
) ~ Saved by the bell ~ Raining Cats and Dogs ~ Have your cake and eat it too ~ Cock and Bull story ~ A piece of cake ~ Add Fuel to Fire ~ All in the same boat ~ Back to Square One ~ Bend Over Backwards ~ Avoid Like the Plague ~ Once in a Blue Moon ~ Come Hell of High Water ~ Dropping like Flies Field Day ~ Finding Your Feet ~ Crying over spilt milk ~ Have an Axe to grind ~ Hit the nail on the head” Or, if you find a really interesting idiom or phrase that has been out of circulation for a while, you can bring it back.