Every language has its own collection of wise sayings that many people call idioms. Those phrases generally offer advice about how to live and also transfer some underlying ideas, principles and values of a given society. They usually have a meaning that goes beyond just the words that make them up. In the past, we have…
English can be tricky to understand, but it is important to master. It is the most widespread language in the world, and more widely spoken and written than any other language on earth in the history of humankind. Over 400 million people use English as a mother tongue and over 700 million people speak it as a foreign language. Of all the world’s languages that have been recorded (of which there are over 2,700), English is arguably the richest in vocabulary as it is estimated there are one million English words. Three-quarters of all the world’s mail, cables and internet correspondence is in English. And 5 of the largest broadcasting companies in the world (CBS, NBC, ABC, BBC and CBC) transmit in English, reaching up to a billion people.
There are a lot of phrases and expressions that are unique to American English that when understood and used properly, can make you sound like a native speaker. Here are 10 very English phrases to try out this week. They are related to either music, running or love. Which ones are American English only? We look forward to your comments!
- Music to one’s ears.
- It means: to hear something great.
- Example sentence: She really missed her family a lot, so it was music to her ears when she heard her sister’s voice.
- To ring a bell.
- It means: to sound sound familiar.
- Example sentence: He didn’t recognize the professor’s face, but her name rang a bell.
- To face the music.
- It means: to handle the consequences of an action.
- Example sentence: She was unprepared for the meeting, so she had to face the music when her boss asked for a report.
- To sing someone’s praises.
- It means: to say very good things about someone.
- When he finally handed in an excellent report, the boss sang his praises to the whole department
- Running behind.
- It means: to be late.
- Example sentence: Her alarm clock didn’t wake her on time, so she was running behind that morning.
- Running the show.
- It means: being in charge.
- Example sentence: When you are the boss of the company, then you can run the show.
- Run it by someone.
- It means: to go over a plan with someone.
- Example sentence: We made the plan last night. Can you run it by your boss and see if he approves?
- Running around in circles.
- It means: to seem to be doing a lot of activity, but not getting anything accomplished.
- Example sentence: Because they did not make it clear what she needed to do, she was running around in circles all day.
- Head over heels.
- It means: to be absolutely and completely in love.
- Example sentence: Tina is head over heels in love with Jorge; she can’t stop talking about him.
- On the rocks.
- It means: when a relationship starts to have problems.
- Example sentence: I think our neighbors’ marriage is on the rocks. All I do is hear them fighting.
- April 30, 2015
- April 23, 2015
***The following article— “How To Be A Truly Great Writer” by Ashley Elizabeth Wood is not an official Albanian Voices article. The views expressed in this article are entirely those of its author and do not necessarily represent the views of Albanian Voices or any of its partner organizations.*** Stephen King is one of the United State’s…
- April 16, 2015
English is not an easy language to master. We have difficult spelling rules and pronunciation is tricky. There are words that sound the same, but are spelled differently. There are words that are spelled the same and mean different things. It’s enough to make you lose your mind! Some people don’t learn English in school;…
- April 9, 2015
***The following article— “Motivate Yourself To Write!” by Ashley Elizabeth Wood is not an official Albanian Voices article. The views expressed in this article are entirely those of its author and do not necessarily represent the views of Albanian Voices or any of its partner organizations.*** Many people want to be writers and they say that they…
- March 26, 2015
Sending emails used to be an informal thing because we used to use hand-written letters to sound formal. Now that emails are the primary form of communication in a professional and personal capacity, it is important to make sure your email doesn’t send the wrong message. Especially for non-native English speakers, it is difficult to…