Catch Idioms

Here are some idiomatic expression using the word ‘catch’.

Catch somebody’s eye

To catch somebody’s eye is to get their attention.

  • A sudden movement behind the curtain caught my eye.

When you try to catch someone’s eye, you are trying to get their attention.

  • I tried to catch her eye, but she was busy talking to others.

Something that catches your eye will most probably be attractive or different.

  • It was her diamond necklace that caught my eye.

Catch your breath

To catch your breath is to wait and rest for a moment after a period of frenetic activity.

  • You are too tired. Sit down and catch your breath.
  • It was such a hectic day. I couldn’t even catch my breath.

Catch somebody napping

If someone is caught napping, they are not prepared for something that happens to them.

  • The teacher caught me napping when she asked me to repeat what she had just said because I was not listening.

Catch your death of cold

To catch your death of cold is to catch a very bad cold.

  • Don’t go out now. It is freezing cold and you will catch your death of cold.

​Catch 22

You find yourself in a catch-22 situation when you can’t do something until you have done another thing which you can’t do until you have done the first thing. In other words, a catch-22 situation is an impossible situation.

Catch somebody with their pants / trousers down

To catch somebody with their pants down is to discover them doing something they want to keep secret.

  • The minister had taken bribes and the press caught him with his pants down. Now he is facing criminal charges.
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Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I am Manjusha. This is my blog where I give English grammar lessons and worksheets.

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