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Blue skies

A overly enthusiastic outlook or disposition. The sales team had blue skies projections for their deals, although not many of those deals were signed.

Blue-eyed boy

Someone's blue-eyed boy is their favorite person.


An intellectual woman is a bluestocking.

Bob's your uncle

(UK) This idiom means that something will be successful: Just tell him that I gave you his name and Bob's your uncle- he'll help you.

Body politic

A group of people organised under a single government or authority (national or regional) is a body politic.

Bold as brass

Someone who is as bold as brass is very confident and not worried about how other people will respond or about being caught.


Bolt from the blue

If something happens unexpectedly and suddenly, it is a bolt from the blue.

Bone of contention

If there is an issue that always causes tension and arguments, it is a bone of contention.

Bone to pick

If you have a bone to pick with someone, you are annoyed about something they have done and want to tell them how you feel.

Boot is on the other foot

When the boot's on the other foot, a person who was in a position of weakness is now in a position of strength.

Born to the purple

Someone who is born to the purple is born in a royal or aristocratic family. ("Born in the purple" is also used.)

Born with a silver spoon in your mouth

If you are born with a silver spoon in your mouth, you are born into a rich family.

Both ends meet

If you make both ends meet, you live off the money you earn and don't go into debt.

Bottom line

In accountancy, the bottom line is net income, and is used idiomatically to mean the conclusion.

Bounce ideas

If you bounce ideas off someone, you share your ideas with them to know whether they think they would work.

Bounce off the walls

If someone's bouncing off the walls, they are very excited about something.

Bouquet of orchids

Id someone deserves a bouquet of orchids, they have done something worthy of praise.

Box and dice

Box and dice means everything.

Box clever

(UK) If you box clever, you use your intelligence to get what you want, even if you have to cheat a bit.

Box of fluffy ducks

(NZ) Used when something is working well or going your way. If you are happy, you are a box of fluffy ducks. Also can be shortened to 'a box of fluffies'.  

Boxing and coxing

If people are boxing and coxing, they are sharing responsibilities so that one of them is working while the other isn't. It can also be used when couples are sharing a house, but their relationship has broken down and when one is at home, the other stays out.

Boys in blue

The boys in blue are the police.

Brain surgery

If something is not brain surgery, it isn't very complicated or difficult to understand or master.

Brass monkey

If it's brass monkey weather, or cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey, it is extremely cold.

Brass neck

(UK) Someone who has the brass neck to do something has no sense of shame about what they do.

Brass tacks

If you get down to brass tacks, you get down to the real business.

Bread and butter

Bread and butter issues are ones that affect people directly and in a very important way.


Used to describe the person that earns the most money. For example - She's the breadwinner in the family.

Break a leg

This idiom is a way of wishing someone good luck.

Break even

If you break even, you don't make any money, but you don't lose any either.

Break ground

If you break ground, or break new ground, you make progress, taking things into a new area or going further than anyone has gone before. 'Ground-breaking' is used an adjective.

Break the back of the beast

If you break the back of the beast, you accomplish a challenge.

Break the ice

When you break the ice, you get over any initial embarrassment or shyness when you meet someone for the first time and start conversing.

Break your duck

(UK) If you break your duck, you do something for the first time.

Break your heart

If someone upsets you greatly, they break your heart, especially if they end a relationship.

Breathe down your neck

If someone follows you or examines what you're doing very closely, they are breathing down your neck.

Breathe life into

If you breathe life into something, you give people involved more energy and enthusiasm again.  ('Breathe new life' is also used.)

Breathe your last

When you breathe your last, you die.

Bridge the gap

If you bridge the gap, you make a connection where there is a great difference.

Bright and breezy

When someone is cheerful and full of energy, they are bright and breezy.

Bright as a button

A person who is as bright as a button is very intelligent or smart.

Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed

If someone's bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, they are full of energy and enthusiasm.

Brighten up the day

If something brightens up your day, something happens that makes you feel positive and happy all day long.

Bring a knife to a gunfight

If someone brings a knife to a gunfight, they are very badly prepared for something.

Bring home the bacon

A person who brings home the bacon earns the money that a family live on.

Bring on board

To make people embrace the ideas intended by the leader or agree to join a team or project is to bring them on board.

Bring someone to book

If somebody is brought to book, they are punished or made to account for something they have done wrong.

Bring someone to heel

If you bring someone to heel, you make them obey you.('Call someone to heel' is also used.) 

Bring the curtain down

If you bring the curtain down on something, you bring it to a end.

Bring the house down

Something that brings the house down is acclaimed and praised vigorously.

Bring to the table

If you bring something to the table, you make a contribution or an offer in a discussion or negotiation..

Broad church

If an organisation is described as broad church, it is tolerant and accepting of different opinions and ideas.

Broad strokes

If something is described or defined with broad stokes, then only an outline is given, without fine details.

Broke as a joke and it ain't funny

This idiom in my opinion describes how it's not funny to be without a cent and just uses broke and joke as rhyming words that help explain this idiom a lot better.

Broken record

When someone sounds like a broken record, they keep on repeating the same things. ('Stuck record' is also used.)

Broken reed

If something or someone fails to give you the support you were hoping for, they are a broken reed.

Brown as a berry

Someone who is very sun tanned is brown as a berry.

Brown nose

When someone tries to make themselves popular with somebody, usually in a position of authority, especially by flattering them, they are brown nosing.

Browned off

To be tired of or fed up with

Brownie points

If you try to earn Brownie points with someone, you do things you know will please them.

Brush under the carpet

If you brush something under the carpet, you are making an attempt to ignore it, or hide it from others.

Buggles' turn

(UK) If it Buggles' turn, someone gets promotion through length of service rather than ability, especially in the British civil service.

Bull in a China shop

If someone behaves like a bull in a China shop, they are clumsy when they should be careful.

Bull market

A bull market is a period when investors are optimistic and there are expectations that good financial results will continue.

Bull session

If you have a bull session, you have an informal group discussion about something.


If you're a bull-headed, you're stubborn or inflexible.

Bums on seats

The people who have paid to watch a performance are bums on seats.

Bun in the oven

If a woman has a bun in the oven, she is pregnant.

Bundle of nerves

Someone who is a bundle of nerves is very worried or nervous.

Bur under my saddle

A bur under your saddle is something that annoys you or spurs you into action.('Burr' is an alternative spelling.)

Burn rubber

If you burn rubber, you drive very fast to get somewhere.

Burn the candle at both ends

Someone who burns the candle at both ends lives life at a hectic pace, doing things which are likely to affect their health badly.

Burn the midnight oil

If you stay up very late working or studying, you burn the midnight oil.

Burn your bridges

If you burn your bridges, you do something that makes it impossible to go back from the position you have taken.

Burn your fingers

If you burn your fingers, you suffer a loss or something unpleasant as the result of something you did, making you less likely to do it again.

Burning daylight

Burning daylight is wasting time.

Burning question

A burning question is something we all want to know about.

Burst at the seams

To be filled to or beyond normal capacity: This room will be bursting at the seams when all the guests arrive.

Burst your bubble

If you correct someone's ignorant or delusional belief, you burst their bubble. (Bust someone's bubble is also used.)

Bury the hatchet

If you bury the hatchet, you make peace with someone and stop arguing or fighting.

Bury your head in the sand

If someone buries their head in the sand, they ignore something that is obviously wrong.

Busman's holiday

A busman's holiday is when you spend your free time doing the same sort of work as you do in your job.

Bust my chops

When someone says that they're not going to bust their chops, it means they are not going to work that hard or make much effort.

Busted flush

Someone or something that had great potential but ended up a useless failure is a busted flush.

Busy as a beaver

If you're as busy as a beaver, you're very busy indeed.

Busy as a bee

If you are as busy as a bee, you are very busy indeed.

Butt naked

If someone is butt naked, they have no clothes on at all, often when they can be seen.

Butt of a joke

If something or someone becomes the butt of a joke it or they are not taken seriously anymore.

Butter wouldn't melt in their mouth

If someone looks as if butter wouldn't melt in their mouth, they look very innocent.


Someone who has butterfingers is clumsy and drops things.

Butterflies in your stomach

The nervous feeling before something important or stressful is known as butterflies in your stomach.

Button your lip

If you button your lip, you keep quiet and don't speak. It is also used as a way of telling someone to shut up.

Buy the farm

When somebody has bought the farm, they have died.

By a hair's breadth

If a person escapes from some danger by a hair's breadth, they only just managed to avoid it. The breadth is the thickness of a hair, so they probably feel somewhat lucky because the margin between success and what could easily have been failure was so close.

By a long chalk

(UK) If you beat somebody by a long chalk, you win easily and comfortably.

By a whisker

If you do something by a whisker, you only just manage to do it and come very near indeed to failing.

By and large

By and large means usually or generally.

By cracky

A term used by rural folks in years past to emphasize a matter of importance or urgency. An example: 'By cracky, you need to get out there in the field with that mule and plow and finish the sod-busting before dark.'

By dint of

This means 'as a result of' or 'because of': It would be good to think he'd risen to position of Chief Executive by dint of hard work.

By heart

If you learn something by heart, you learn it word for word.

By hook or by crook

If you are prepared to do something by hook or by crook, you are willing to do anything, good or bad, to reach your goal.

By leaps and bounds

Something that happens by leaps and bounds happens very quickly in big steps.

By the back door

If something is started or introduced by the back door, then it is not done openly or by following the proper procedures.

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[ دوشنبه 14 ارديبهشت 1394 ] [ دوشنبه 14 ارديبهشت 1394 ] [ غلامعلی عباسی ]
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