Idioms exercise

Each of the following sentences contains an idiomatic expression. From the given options select the one that correctly expresses the meaning of the idiom.

1. To eat humble pie is

to apologize humbly

to retract your words

to come to a compromise with somebody

2. To meet trouble halfway is

to worry about it before it comes

to deal with a situation effectively

to fail to deal with a situation

3. If someone is not worth their salt, they are

quite worthless

quite foolish

quite rude

4. To win your spurs is

to become less powerful

to earn reputation

to take a resolute stand

5. To take exception to your remark is

to recommend it

to object to it

to take revenge

6. To put a spoke in somebody’s wheel is

to help them in the execution of their plans

to thwart them in the execution of their plans

to deceive them

7. If something happens in the nick of time, it happens

at the right moment

at the last moment

at an earlier date

8. To put your oar in is

to join a conversation

to offer your opinion when you are not expected to do so

to boast about your achievements

to ignore another person

9. To sing the blues is

to complain

to praise

to read aloud

to shout

10. To jump in feet first is

to act without thinking

to approach a task with little hesitation

to accept the responsibility

to refuse to take risks

11. To put the screws on someone is

to treat them badly

to threaten them with dire consequences so that they will do what you want them to do

to deal with them kindly

to make them work hard

12. To go cap in hand is

to go on a picnic

to beg for money or forgiveness

to enjoy the day

to make a great effort to do something

Answers

1. To eat humble pie is to apologize humbly.

2. To meet trouble halfway is to worry about it before it comes.

3. If someone is not worth their salt, they are quite worthless.

4. To win your spurs is to earn reputation.

5. To take exception to a remark is to object to it.

6. To put a spoke in somebody’s wheel is to thwart them in the execution of their plans.

7. If something happens in the nick of time, it happens at the right moment.

8. To put your oar in is to offer your opinion when you are not expected to do so.

9. To sing the blues is to complain.

10. To jump in feet first is to approach a task with little hesitation

11. To put the screws on someone is to threaten them with dire consequences so that they will do what you want them to do.

12. To go cap in hand is to beg for money or forgiveness.

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Manjusha

Hi, I am Manjusha. This is my blog where I give English grammar lessons and worksheets. You may also want to check out my other blogs IELTS Practice and NCERT Guides

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