Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Easy-to-remember idioms (Part I)

Hi people! Today I would like to teach you some idioms that you’ll find quite easy to remember. Why? Because you already know them in English and their Spanish equivalents are literal (or rather similar) translations. Let’s go!

A taste/dose of your own medicine:
A lesson where other people treat you the same way you treat them in order to teach you that you are acting badly. In Spanish we say “una cucharada de su propia medicina”.

A wolf in sheep's clothing:
A person or thing that appears friendly or harmless but is really hostile. The Spanish version goes “un lobo con piel de oveja” or you could say “un lobo vestido de oveja”.

Better late than never:
Better late than never means that even if you are going to be late, you should still go ahead and do the thing, because it is better to do it late than to never do it at all. In Spanish, we say “más vale tarde que nunca”.

Bite one's tongue:
When you really want to speak out, but you know you should not, it is best to just bite your tongue. i.e. make a desperate effort to avoid saying what you would like to say. In Spanish we say “morderse la lengua”.

Cross one's fingers:
(Also keep one's fingers crossed) Hope that someone or something will be successful. In Spanish, “cruzar los dedos”.

Diamond in the rough:
A diamond in the rough is someone who is generally of good character but lacks manners, education, or style. Often will be expressed just as 'rough diamond'. In Spanish, we would say “Diamante en bruto”.

Have no idea:
To have no idea is a strong way of saying you do not know something. In Spanish you can say “no tengo idea” or “no tengo ni idea”. Both, in English and in Spanish, you can also make the statement a little stronger by adding slightest or least. For example, “I don't have the slightest/least idea”. The translation would be “No tengo ni la más minima idea”.

Last but not least:
Its basically means that the last person announced isn't any less important than the others called before him or her. In Spanish we say “Por último, pero no (por eso) menos importante…

Hit the nail on the head:
Find exactly the right answer. In Spanish, “dar en el clavo”.

Wash one's hands of:
Disclaim responsibility for (something). Originally with biblical allusion to Matt. 27:24. In Spanish we say “lavarse las manos”.

You can read more easy-to-remember idioms here: Part II | Part III | Part IV

If there is an expression you would like to include in this list, feel free to email me at:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It was of great avail.