The Idiom Jungle



(feel) at home

- чувствовать себя как дома

“Come on in. Sit down and feel at home.”

abide by (something)

- придерживаться правил

If you want to be a member of this club, you are to abide by its rules.

able to breathe easily again

- вздохнуть свободно

When Hillary paid her bank loan, she was able to breathe easily again.

able to do (something) blindfolded

- делать что-то вслепую, делать что-то легко и быстро

Jim has always been a skilled worker; he does his job blindfolded.

able to take a joke

- уметь посмеяться над собой

Not everybody is able to take a joke; I, for example, can’t stand when people make fun of me.

about time

- пора бы

I am very annoyed with you; it’s about time you minded your own business.

about to (do something)

- собираться делать что-то

We were about to leave the house when it started to rain.

above and beyond

- больше, чем требуется; больше, чем нужно

I appreciate your kindness; you did above and beyond to help me.

above reproach

- безупречный (ая, ое), вне критики

Bill is a well-mannered young man; his behavior is above reproach.

above suspicion

- вне подозрения

Henry acted as if he were above suspicion, but I am sure he is guilty.


- рассеянный

I don’t think much of Jack; he is so absent-minded.

according to Hoyle

- согласно правилам, делать что-либо строго по правилам

According to Hoyle, the in-patients are not allowed to leave the hospital grounds.

acid test

- серьёзное испытание, пробный камень

The money problem was an acid test in their relationships.

acquire a taste for (something)

- приобрести вкус к чему-либо

Having visited an art gallery, he acquired a taste for modern art.

across the board

- равный для всех и для всего

The owner of the house increased the rent across the board, and all the tenants had to pay 50 dollars more.

act high and mighty

- вести себя высокомерно и властно

Stella acted high and mighty that’s why no one liked her.

act one's age

- вести себя по взрослому

My niece is in her early thirties, but she prefers not to act her age.

act up

- вести себя плохо

The students often act up during the breaks.

add fuel to the fire

- подлить масла в огонь

I wanted to calm him down, but my words only added fuel to the fire.

add insult to injury

- наносить новые оскорбления

I felt pretty bad because my car had broken down, and instead of feeling sorry for me my father added insult to injury.

add up

- подсчитывать, складывать, находить сумму

In vain George was trying to add up the figures, but they just wouldn’t add up.

add up (to something)

- означать что-то, являться результатом чего-то

The information you gave us doesn’t mean anything; it doesn’t add up.

advise against (something)

- разубедить, отсоветовать

We were advised against putting up a tent, the weather being very cold and nasty.

afraid of one's own shadow

- бояться собственной тени

Don’t be a coward; it’s silly of you to be afraid of your own shadow.

after a fashion

- до известной степени, некоторым образом, кое-как

Jack did his home assignment after a fashion but certainly not very well.

after all

- в конце концов, после всего

I didn’t know what language classes to elect, but then I made up my mind to take French after all.

after all

- в конечном счёте

Mother doesn’t need to help Phil get dressed. After all, he is a big boy.

after all is said and done

- наконец, после всего

After all is said and done, they have shown a very good performance.

after hours

- после закрытия, после окончания работы

Fanny always has a lot of work in the office so she stays after hours.

after the fact

- после случившегося

“It is after the fact that you say you are sorry. Don’t you know you have caused a lot of trouble?”

against one's will

- против чьей-то воли

I don’t want you to do it against your will.

against the clock

- торопиться что-либо сделать пока не поздно

They worked against the clock to complete the job.

ahead of one's time

- опередивший своё время, свою эпоху (во взглядах, поступках и т.д.)

Newton’s ideas in physics were very much ahead of his time.

ahead of the game

- делать больше, чем необходимо

The company secretary did more work that day to be ahead of the game the next day.

ahead of time

- раньше времени, раньше срока

I asked the permission of my boss to leave work ahead of time.

air (something) out

- проветривать что-либо

I’d like to put the rugs outside to air them out.

air one's grievances

- жаловаться прилюдно

During the war their houses were destroyed so they couldn’t but air their grievances to the journalists.

air one`s dirty laundry/linen in public

- выносить сор из избы, перемывать грязное бельё при всех

It pleased Greg immensely to air other people’s dirty laundry in public.

alive and well/kicking

- быть живым и здоровым

At the age of 95 my Uncle Tobias is still alive and kicking.

all along

- всё время

Jeremy has known about my problems all along.

all at once

- внезапно, без предупреждения

All at once the lightning struck and it started to pour.

all day long

- весь день

Mary has been working in the garden all day long.

all ears

- быть готовым выслушать кого-либо

If you want me to hear you out, I am all ears.

all for (someone or something)

- быть целиком за

I was all for going on a picnic, the day being so sunny.

all in

- быть очень усталым

Having spent long hours at the computer, Jill was all in.

all in a day's work

- часть того, что нужно делать; что-то ожидаемое

It was all in a day's work when the police arrested the criminal.

all in all

- суммарно, в целом

There were twelve people all in all at the parents’ meeting that day.

all in one piece

- целым и невредимым

As we packed all the breakable things carefully, we hoped that they would arrive all in one piece.

all manner of (someone or something)

- всевозможные люди или вещи

Len has to do all manner of things and get in touch with all manner of people at work.

all night long

- всю ночь напролёт

I couldn’t sleep well because people were shouting outside my window all night long.

all of a sudden

- внезапно, вдруг

We were watching television when all of a sudden the electricity went off.

all over but the shouting

- окончательное решение, закончиться раз и навсегда

It will be all over but the shouting for you if you reject their job offer.

all over the place

- везде, повсеместно

I looked all over the place for my textbook.

all right

- хорошо, нормально

Will it be all right for me to join you?

all set

- всё готово (можно начинать)

It was all set and we decided to start on our journey.

all sweetness and light

- казаться хорошим, невинным

Outwardly Celia is all sweetness and light, but I know she is not that good.

all systems go

- всё готово (первоначально использовалось при запуске ракеты)

It is all systems go, so we can begin to install the new equipment.

all talk (and no action)

- одни разговоры, а дела нет

I wouldn’t rely on Paul; he is all talk and no action.

all the rage

- последний писк (о моде)

I strongly advise you to buy these jeans; they are all the rage of the season.

all the time

- постоянно, всё время

My friend Oliver goes to the health club all the time.

all thumbs

- неловкий, неуклюжий (все пальцы на руке – большие)

Little Sam broke a cup and his Mom said he was all thumbs.

all to the good

- всё к лучшему

“It is all to the good that you walked out on your boy friend”, my mother said.

all told

- всё вместе, всё включительно

All told, there are six rooms in the house including the kitchen.


- большое, значительное усилие

Lionel made an all-out-effort to remain calm.

allow for (someone or something)

- рассчитывать, планировать

I think you ought to allow for some time to get to the airport in time.

along with (someone or something)

- вместе с кем-то, в дополнение к чему-то

Sarah has decided to go on a river trip along with her brother.

amount to (something)

- быть успешным

I am afraid you will never amount to anything if you don’t work hard.

amount to the same thing

- быть одинаковым, иметь тот же эффект

You can either take a taxi or go by bus; it will amount to the same thing.

an arm and a leg

- огромная сумма денег

Their new house will cost them an arm and a leg.

answer to (someone)

- отвечать перед кем-либо, объяснять свои действия

Bill lived on his own; he had no family and consequently no one to answer to.

any number of (someone or something)

- достаточное количество

“You always have any number of excuses for missing your classes.

appear out of nowhere

- внезапно появиться, появиться ниоткуда

A big lorry appeared out of nowhere and splashed mud all over me.

apple of (one`s) eye

- любимчик (зеница ока)

Her little son is the apple of her eye.

argue for the sake of arguing/argument

- спорить ради спора

William likes to argue for the sake of arguing.

arm in arm

- под руку (идти под руку)

Amiss and Cora were walking arm in arm in the park.

armed and dangerous

- вооружен и опасен

The criminal was suspected of being armed and dangerous.

armed to the teeth

- вооружен до зубов

The police stopped a car. The man in the car was armed to the teeth.

around the clock

- 24 часа, сутки

Most of the supermarkets in big American cities work around the clock.

arrive on the scene

- прибыть на место происшествия

Tim dialed 911 and the police arrived on the scene almost at once.

as a last resort

- последняя мера, последнее средство (когда всё остальное испробовано)

As a last resort John decided to take a loan from the bank.

as a matter of fact

- фактически

As a matter of fact cinema is the most popular entertainment for millions of people.

as a result of (something)

- в результате

Ben didn’t study well during the term and as a result of his laziness he failed his exams.

as a rule

- как правило

On the weekends I sleep longer as a rule.

as far as

- насколько (я знаю, понимаю)

As far as I know, the Morgans left the town long ago.

as far as possible

- на сколько возможно

“I’ll do everything to rescue the girl; I’ll go as far as possible”.

as good as one's word

- быть верным своему слову

Never give a promise which you are not able to keep; be as good as your word.

as long as

- если, при условии

I can let you have my umbrella as long as you can promise not to lose it.

as luck would have it

- случайно

As luck would have it, I met Hillary outside the cafe. I hadn’t seen her for ages..

as one

- все, как один

The audience stood up as one and began to applaud the actors.

as such

- как таковой, в таком виде

“As such, I can’t possibly sign your application. You’ll have to re-write it”.

as the crow flies

- по прямой между двух местностей (так же прямо, как летит птица)

As the crow flies, it is not more than 3 miles between his house and the station.

as usual

- как обычно

As usual, at the theatre they prefer to sit in the front rows.

as well as

- тоже, также как

Kevin bought a thick magazine as well as several books to while away the time during the journey.

as yet

- до настоящего времени

As yet, we know nothing about his intentions.

ask (someone) out

- назначать свидание

After a good deal of hesitation John finally asked Mary out.

ask for the moon

- желать недостижимого

You will never get what you want, so it’s no use asking for the moon.

ask for trouble

- напрашиваться на неприятности

“Leave me alone; you are asking for trouble.”

asleep at the switch

- не распознать ситуацию, упустить удобный случай

I suppose Emma was asleep at the switch. She missed her chance of getting a promotion.

assault and battery

- нападение с причинением увечья

Several men were arrested for assault and battery after the fight in the park.

at (someone's) earliest convenience

- для чьего-либо или для собственного удобства (по первому зову)

“I will visit you at your earliest convenience, I promise.”

at (someone's) service

- к услугам кого-либо, в чьём-то распоряжении

If you stay at a good hotel, all the members of the staff will be at your service day and night.

at (someone`s) beck and call

- быть на побегушках у кого-либо

Cinderella was at her step-mother’s beck and call.

at a loss

- быть в растерянности

Paul might have been at a loss whom to turn to for help.

at a loss (for words)

- не находить нужных слов

All of a sudden Jim started to insult me, and I was at a loss for words to talk back.

at a sitting

- в один приём, за один раз

The cake was so tasty that we finished all of it at a sitting.

at a stretch

- непрерывно, подряд

It is very seldom that I can enjoy my holiday for three weeks at a stretch.

at all costs

- любой ценой

He was determined to secure his treasures at all costs.

at any rate

- во всяком случае

"At any rate, Peter was able to prove his innocence”.

at bay

- на расстоянии

Anna doesn’t like Jake; she intends to keep him at bay.

at best

- в лучшем случае

My teacher told me that I had two weeks at best in which to finish writing my essay.

at cross-purposes

- разные цели

It seems my friend and her husband are at cross-purposes; they often argue about everything.

at death's door

- на пороге смерти

It was only at death’s door that Timothy could confess his fault.

at ease

- раскованно; свободно; удобно, как дома

I always feel at ease in the presence of my friends.

at every turn

- на каждом шагу, куда не взглянешь

The streets of the small town were full of cars; there were cars, big and small, at every turn.

at face value

- номинальная, реальная стоимость

Olaf’s new car was worth a lot of money at face value.

at fault

- быть виновным

I wondered who was at fault for the loss of valuable books.

at first

- вначале, с начала

At first Ron wanted to go on a river trip with us, but then he changed his mind.

at first blush

- на первый взгляд

At first blush Samuel seemed to be kind and decent, but he turned out to be quite mean.

at hand

- близко, под рукой

When I am working, I prefer to have everything close at hand.

at heart

- в глубине души

I thought her to be a bit tough, but now I know she is very vulnerable at heart.


(have a) bee in one`s bonnet

- всё время думать об одном и том же, зациклиться на чём-то одном

Miss Merryweather had a bee in her bonnet about traveling around the world.

(no) bed of roses

- (не) ложе из роз (о не благоприятной ситуации)

"I don’t think your married life will be a bed of roses."

a brush with the law

- столкновение с законом

Sam had a brush with the law because of a petty crime.

back and forth

- туда сюда, взад и вперёд, в ту и другую сторону

Lionel nervously paced the room back and forth.

back down (from someone or something)

- отступаться, отказываться от чего-либо

I saw that Ann was right, so I decided to back down from further arguing.

back in circulation

- вернуть в обращение, снова стать доступным

The textbooks are back in circulation; the students have returned them to the library.

back in circulation

- вернуться к прежней жизни (обычно после разрыва отношений с кем-либо)

It’s good that Larry has broken up with Maggie; he is back in circulation now.

back of beyond

- самый отдалённый участок, глушь (у чёрта на куличках)

I could hardly imagine that Lucy lived so far, practically at the back of beyond.

back on one`s feet

- снова встать на ноги (вернуть себе прежнее положение)

Ms. Drurry has undergone a serious operation and now she is back on her feet.

back out (of something)

- отказаться от обещания

Stacy backed out of her promise to assist us in our experiments.

back the wrong horse

- поставить не на ту лошадь, т.е. сделать неверный выбор

This is not the car I really want. I’m afraid I have backed the wrong horse having bought it.

back to square one

- вернуться к началу чего-либо

Kelly was back to square one in her desire to renew her project.

back to the drawing board

- начать с чистого листа, начать всё с начала

Cora must have failed to achieve good results in her experiment so she had to go back to the drawing board.

back to the salt mines

- вернуться к чему-либо с большой неохотой, например к работе, которую не хочется делать

The work was tedious; they finished their coffee and went back to the salt mines.

back up (someone or something)

- поддержать кого-либо или что-либо

Collin’s proposal was silly that’s why nobody backed it up.


- одно событие, непосредственно следующее за другим

There were two back-to-back lectures on Art today because the lecturer had been ill the previous week.

bad blood (between people)

- вражда, неприязненные отношения между людьми

Derek and his cousin are not on speaking terms; there is much bad blood between them.

bad-mouth (someone or something)

- оговаривать кого-то, отзываться плохо о чем-либо

Their neighbor Mr. Cannon is a mean person; he has the habit of bad-mouthing everybody.

bag of tricks

- разнообразные приёмы, трюки (мешок хитростей)

If a teacher works with small children, she should have a bag of tricks to keep them busy.

bail (someone or something) out

- выручить из беды

Jack is in a fix. I don’t see any reason why we can’t bail him out.

bail (someone) out

- брать на поруки, вносить залог

The parents of the young delinquent had to pay much money to bail him out of prison.

bail out (of something)

- отказываться от чего-либо, прыгать с парашютом

Nick hesitated a second before bailing out of the plane.

balance the books

- подводить баланс

The job of an accountant is to balance the books of his company.

ball of fire

- сгусток энергии (об активном и энергичном человеке)

Though my Aunt Lora is 75 she is a ball of fire; she does a lot of things about the house.

bang/beat one's head against the wall

- биться головой о стену, делать что-либо безнадёжное

Jim gave up any attempts to prove his innocence; he didn’t want to bang his head against the wall.

bank on (someone or something)

- рассчитывать на кого-то или что-то

You know you can always bank on me for help.

baptism of fire

- крещение огнём ( первый опыт часто трудный или неприятный)

When I started my own small business, I went through a baptism of fire.

bargain for (something)

- рассчитывать, принимать что-либо во внимание

My father’s financial support was more than I had bargained for.

bargain on (something)

- планировать или ожидать чего-либо

I didn’t bargain on having so many relatives staying in my house at the same time.

barge in on (someone or something)

- прерывать, встревать в разговор, навязываться

I hate people to barge in on me when I am doing something important.

be into (something)

- интересоваться чем-то, быть вовлечённым во что-то

My little brother is very much into chess and draughts.

be of the persuasion that (something) is so

- быть убеждённым в правильности чего-то

Choosing a career is a difficult task and I am of the persuasion that it is really so.

be off

- уходить, убегать

I am sorry I can’t talk to you now; I must be off.

be off on the wrong foot

- плохо начать что-то делать, испортить отношения

He tried to reason with his sister, but it seemed that they were off on the wrong foot already.

be off to a bad start

- плохо начать что-то делать

Our trip to Manchester was off to a bad start when our bus broke down in the middle of the way.

be that as it may

- будь, что будет

"Be that as it may, I am not going to let you give up your career."

be the case

- доподлинный случай или ситуация

"It might have been the case before, but now we are going to act differently".

be the death of (someone)

- погибель, крах, серьёзная проблема

"If you eat too many sweets, it may be the death of your teeth," my mother said.

be to blame

- быть виноватым

The boy said he was not to blame for the broken window; it was not his fault.

bear (someone or something) in mind

- иметь что-либо или кого-либо в виду

Wanda ought to bear this risky affair in mind; it might be a fraud, for all I know.


(have the) cheek to do something
- иметь наглость сделать что-либо
"You have broken my camera and now you have the cheek to tell me that you didn’t do it."

(in) care of (someone)
- послать на чьё–либо имя корреспонденцию для другого лица
"I will send you a letter in care of your parents. O.K?"

(not one`s) cup of tea
- что-либо, что (не) нравиться
"Washing the dishes is not my cup of tea, so I’d rather my sister did it."

(one's) chickens have come home to roost
- беда бедою отзовётся (то плохое, что желаете другому вернётся к вам)
Margaret’s chickens have come home to roost and she has to take responsibility for what she has done.

a case in point
- смысл чего-либо; пример, иллюстрирующий что-либо
"Let me give you a case in point, an example that illustrates my argument."
a case of mistaken identity
- ошибиться, принять одного человека за другого
I tapped the girl on the shoulder, thinking it was my friend, but it was a case of mistaken identity.

a come-down
- понижение (по службе), уменьшение доходов, влияния
Ronald’s recent status is a come-down; he used to be invited to big functions but is now ignored.

a copycat
- подражатель (чьей-либо работы или действий)
The young man was accused of being a copycat of the pictures of great masters.

a course of action
- ход дела, порядок, направление
The three men decided on their course of action before they set out on a boat trip.

a credit to (someone or something)
- быть честью и славой для кого-либо или чего-либо
The Math teacher was a credit to the school where he worked.


a dime a dozen
- небольшая ценность чего-либо, "грош цена"
Tim bought a few used magazines; they were a dime a dozen.

a dose of one's own medicine
- отплатить той же монетой
"You needn’t feel hurt; you got a dose of your own medicine."

a doubting Thomas
- человек, который во всём сомневается, "Фома неверующий"
Fred is a doubting Thomas; he always needs a strong proof to believe something.

a drag on (someone)
- обуза для кого-либо
"Could you possibly take me to an outing with you? I shan’t be a drag on you, I promise."

daily grind
- кропотливый ежедневный труд
It was the daily grind of working in the mine that was wearing him out.

dance to a different tune
- изменить своё поведение или отношение
"When you learn the truth, you’ll be dancing to a different tune."

dance with death
- рисковать
The mountaineer was dancing with death when he tried to conquer the highest peak in the world.

dare (someone) to do (something)
- подзадоривать кого-либо сделать что-либо
"I dare you to jump the stream!"

dark horse
- малоизвестный политик "тёмная лошадка"
Though the Tory candidate was a dark horse he won the election effortlessly.

darken (someone's) door
- навещать кого-либо, приходить куда-либо
Miss Davidson was prudent; she never darkened the door of any shady emporium.


an ear to the ground
- пристальное внимание к тому, что происходит
Mrs. Spencer had an ear to the ground and knew everything that was going on in her son’s family.

an end in itself
- цель сама по себе
For Bob painting is an end in itself, and he never shows his pictures to anybody.

each and every
- каждый
Each and every student had to take a test that day.

eager beaver
- человек много и охотно работающий, "трудоголик"
Sam is not at all an eager beaver; he hates hard work.

eagle eye
- зоркий глаз, "орлиный глаз"
Alan kept an eagle eye upon all Carry’s activities.

- нагоняй, выговор
The boss gave one of his employees earful when the latter came to work late.

early bird
- человек, встающий рано, "ранняя пташка", "жаворонок"
"I hate getting up early; I am not an early bird, I must confess."

early bird catches the worm
- кто рано встаёт, тому бог подаёт
Getting up early proved to her the truth of the old saying that the early bird catches the worm. She was able to do a lot of work.

early on
- в начале, на раннем этапе
They had a family reunion early on that Sunday.

earn one's keep
- оправдывать своё содержание работой
I stayed with a host family and helped them about the house in order to earn my keep.


a fair shake
- обхождение, хорошее отношение
At the job interview Steve was given a fair shake.

a falling-out (with someone)
- разногласие, ссора с кем-либо
Clarissa had a falling-out with her best friend, but they were able to make it up pretty soon.

a far cry from (something)
- большая разница, отличное от чего-либо
Lord, what a far cry from this man to this woman, he thought.

a feather in one`s cap
- то, чем можно гордиться; предмет гордости, достижение
He thinks it will be a feather in his cap to cure a difficult cardiac case.

a fine how-do-you-do
- затруднительное положение
The car broke down on a country road and they were in a fine how-do-you-do.

a fine-toothed/tooth comb
- ничего не упускающая, тщательная проверка; поиск
The police went over the area with a fine-toothed comb, but they could not find anybody.

a fish out of water
- человек не в своей стихии, "рыба без воды"
The woman was like a fish out of water at the fashion show.

a flight of fancy
- полёт фантазии
It is Sam’s flight of fancy to go to the North Pole.

a foot in the door
- благоприятная возможность
"I think you can get a foot in the door if you act quickly."

a force to be reckoned with
- сила, с которой приходиться считаться
This young artist is a force to be reckoned with in the artistic world.


(go) haywire
- разваливаливаться, плохо работать, "барахлить"
My computer went haywire so I need to buy a new one.

(in) high gear
- на полной скорости, полным ходом (о приготовлениях)
The preparations for his parents visit were in high gear when they called that they couldn’t come.

(live) hand-to-mouth
- жить очень бедно, "перебиваться с хлеба на квас"
After her husband’s death Silvia was living a hand-to-mouth existence.

(not) have a clue (about something)
- (не) знать (не) иметь представление о чем-либо
I have no clue what happened that day.

(not) have a snowball's chance in hell
- не иметь не единого шанса
We didn't have a snowball's chance in hell to get the information we wanted.

(not) have anything to do with someone
- (не) иметь ничего общего с кем-либо
I don’t have anything to do with Pam; she isn’t trustworthy.

(not) hear of (something)
- не позволять что-либо, "и слышать не хочу"
"I won’t hear of your talking to me like that."

(one's) hair stands on end
- сильно испугаться, "волосы встали дыбом"
Miranda’s hair stood on end. She was so scared that she sat rooted to her wheelchair unable to move or think.

(one's) hands are tied
- быть не в состоянии помочь, “руки связаны”
Mark knew he was not able to help his friend because his hands were tied.

(the) high life
- роскошная жизнь
Ms. Bonfire had been living the high life when her husband left her for a younger woman.


(not) in so many words
- именно этими словами; ясно, недвусмысленно
The house owner threatened in so many words to raise the rent.

idiot box
- телевизор
My brother sits glued to the idiot box all day long.

if looks could kill
- убийственный злобный взгляд; "если бы взглядом можно было убить"
If looks could kill, then the look he gave me would have killed me at once.

if so
- раз так, в таком случае
He won’t die unless we abandon him; and if so, we will be answerable for his death.

if the shoe fits, wear it
- если вы принимаете замечание на свой счёт, пусть будет так; "на воре шапка горит"
Ann was mortally offended by my harmless remark. I looked at her and said that if the shoe fits, wear it.
if worst comes to worst
- в худшем случае, на худой конец
Even if worst comes to worst, she has got enough to live on for six months at least.

ill at ease
- чувствовать себя неловко, нервничать
I saw that Jimmy felt ill at ease and decided not to tell him about his failure.

ill will
- недоброжелательность, неприязнь
John and George are rivals, and there is much ill will between them.

ill-disposed to (do something)
- проявлять нежелание делать что-либо
They seem to be ill-disposed to cooperate with us.

ill-gotten gains
- добытый нечестным путём
"I am sure Mr. Bobtail’s wealth is ill-gotten gains."


a jack-of-all-trades
- мастер на все руки
Tom is a jack-of-all-trades and master of none.

jack up (something)
- поднять цены; поднять что-либо при помощи домкрата
It is difficult to rent a good house for a decent price; the owners have jacked up their prices.

jam on the brakes
- нажать на тормоза
On seeing a big truck Tim jammed on the brakes, but it was too late.

- переполненный
I usually take a bus to go to work, but it is always jam-packed during rush hours.

Jekyll and Hyde
- кто-либо, сочетающий в себе хорошее и плохое
My ex-husband is like Jekyll and Hyde. One minute he is all smiles but the next minute he is irritated.
jockey for position
- не стесняться в средствах для достижения цели
"I don’t think it’s the right time to jockey for position when the company is in a hole."

jog (someone's) memory
- помогать кому-либо вспомнить, напомнить
In old days torture was used to jog the prisoners’ memory especially of those who would not betray their friends.

John Doe
- воображаемый истец в судебном процессе
They use the name "John Doe" as the name of a person who is applying for something.

John Henry/John Hancock
- чья-либо подпись
"In order to receive the money you ought to sign your John Henry here."

- новоприбывший
Sam is a Johnny-come-lately, and he doesn’t really know what is going on here.


(a fine) kettle of fish
- неудовлетворительная ситуация, неразбериха
"This is a fine kettle of fish. What will we do without the water in our house?"

a kick-off
- старт, начало
They decided to have a kick-off for the electoral campaign two months before the elections.

a kickback
- незаконно выплаченные деньги, взятка
The company had to give Deputy Mayor a kickback in order to win the market.

a knock-down-drag-out fight
- отчаянная драка или спор
Their knock-down-drag-out fight lasted for half an hour.

a knockout
- сногшибательная женщина
Wella thought that she was a knockout, but Tim didn’t share her optimistic opinion.
a know-it-all
- всезнайка
Jacob is a know-it-all that’s why I don’t think much of him.

a known fact
- известный факт
It is a known fact that it’s better to do well than to say well.

a known quantity
- известная величина
The new teacher is a known quantity in the school because she worked here before.

kangaroo court
- неправедный суд, незаконное разбирательство
"I refuse to be convicted by a kangaroo court!"

Katie, bar the door
- заприте дверь (будьте готовы к неприятностям)
A few holigans are ready to break into the bar and start a fight. "Katie, bar the door.


a labor of love
- бескорыстный или безвозмездный труд
My volunteer work at the Animal Shelter is a labor of love because I am fond of animals.

a lame duck
- неудачник, "несчастненький"
The prospect of his daughter’s life being spent among lame ducks worried him.

a last-ditch effort
- последнее усилие
Adam made a last-ditch effort to persuade his friend not to immigrate to Canada.

a law unto oneself
- сам себе закон
"Don’t think you are a law unto yourself; your behavior is outrageous."

a leading question
- наводящий вопрос
The students didn’t know what kind of answer to give, so the teacher started asking leading questions.
a left-handed compliment
- неуклюжий, двусмысленный комплимент
Julia didn’t like her new jacket and hated her friend to give her a left-handed compliment.

a leg man
- посыльный, курьер
Horace has been working as a leg man for a big company since he graduated from high school.

a license to (do something)
- лицензия, разрешение на деятельность
George was happy to have got a license to work as a window dresser.

a little bird told me
- мне стало известно по секрету, "сорока на хвосте принесла"
A little bird told me that my Mom would give me a nice present for my birthday.

a little bit
- немного, чуточку
I only had a little bit to eat this morning and now I feel awfully hungry.


(get or become) mixed up
- растеряться или запутаться
The old man becomes mixed up when he tries to use a cell phone.

a man-about-town
- светский человек
Alec is a man-about-town and a good mixer; he likes to mess around.

a match for (someone)
- быть под стать кому-либо
The Russian football team was a match for the French one.

a matter of course
- само собой разумеющееся, в порядке вещей
They did things as a matter of course and never thought about the consequence.

a matter of fact
- реальная действительность
It is a matter of fact that the old building should be pulled down as soon as possible.

a matter of life and death
- вопрос жизни и смерти, жизненно важный вопрос
"Do be serious for just five minutes! After all, it is a matter of life and death."

a matter of opinion
- спорный вопрос
It is a matter of opinion as where to house the new art gallery.

a matter-of-fact manner/way
- простое изложение фактов
The witness described the accident in a matter-of-fact manner.

a Mecca for (something)
- Мекка, святое место
The vast forests in Siberia is a Mecca for people who like hunting.

a meeting of minds
- полное согласие
Fortunately we had a meeting of minds about our common project.


a nail in (someone's) coffin
- что-либо, что может навредить кому-либо ("вбить гвоздь в чей-либо гроб")
"Fighting with him will only be a nail in your coffin. It won’t get you anywhere."

a narrow escape
- опасное, рискованное положение, быть "на волоске от гибели"
"That was a narrow escape," said Alice very frightened at the sudden change.

a needle in a haystack
- "иголка в стоге сена"; то, что очень трудно найти
Looking for the lost letter among the hundreds of other letters is like looking for a needle in a haystack.

a nervous Nellie
- застенчивый, нерешительный человек
I think Daniel is a nervous Nellie; he is so shy he won’t say boo to a goose.

a nest egg
- сумма денег, отложенная на чёрный день
Weber liked to keep a little nest egg for himself.

a new broom sweeps clean
- новая метла по-новому метёт
"A new brush sweeps clean" means that a person with a new perspective can make great changes.

a new deal
- дать шанс начать всё сначала
The owner of a small business was given a new deal as he was able to get a loan from the bank.

a new hire
- новый сотрудник
The secretary in the firm was a new hire, and she was not very good at her job.

a new lease on life
- обновлённый взгляд на жизнь
George found new enthusiasm and energy for his job, in other words he had a new lease on life.

a new person
- (стать) новым человеком, измениться
Horace is a new person now that he has quit worrying about his job.


(as) old as the hills
- очень старый
I decided not to buy that house because it looked as old as the hills.

(the) odd (something)
- нечётный, непарный; необычный, странный
What an odd thing to say!

a once-over
- беглый взгляд или осмотр
The doctor gave the patient a once-over and pronounced him to be getting better.

a one-armed bandit
- игровой автомат, "однорукий бандит"
William is always short of money because he spends a lot of time with a one-armed bandit.

a one-night stand
- одноразовое мероприятие
The amateur drama performers played a one-night stand in the park.

a one-track mind
- думать только об одном, "заклиниться" на одном
Joanna is a workaholic and has a one-track mind. All she thinks about is her work.

an oddball
- чудак, своеобразно мыслящий человек
Adam Smith is an oddball, and very often he doesn’t act like other people.

an odor of sanctity
- ореол святости
There is an odor of sanctity in the Lincoln Cathedral.

an old hand at (doing something)
- опытный в чём-либо, знаток чего-либо
You can rely on him; he is an old hand at repairing cars.

an open book
- лёгкий для понимания
James is an open book; it is easy to know what he thinks or feels about things.


a pack of lies
- сплошная ложь
"Everything that you have told your friends is a pack of lies, and I hope they won’t believe you."

a pain in the neck/ass
- надоедливый, раздражающий, возмущающий (человек)
Peter is very annoying; he is a regular pain in the neck.

a passport to (something)
- доступ куда-либо
Steven had a university education, and it was a passport to find a good job.

a past master at (something)
- знаток своего дела, непревзойдённый мастер
The mechanic is a past master at repairing all kinds of cars.

a pat on the back
- похвалить
The teacher gave Mark a pat on the back because he passed a very difficult test.

a pay-off
- отдача (в результате работы), вознаграждение
I expect to get a pay-off from the research I am doing.

a peeping Tom
- чересчур любопытный человек
Willy is a regular peeping Tom; it gives him immense pleasure to spy on people in their homes.

a penny for one`s thoughts
- О чём это вы задумались?
"A penny for your thoughts," Jim said. "My thoughts are not worth anything because I was thinking of you," Wanda replied.

a penny saved is a penny earned
- пенни сбережённое – всё равно, что заработанное, "копейка рубль бережёт"
"It’s easier to spend money than to earn it. But you should remember "A penny saved is a penny earned".

a pep talk
- слова поддержки, ободрения
The Dean gave the students a pep talk before their finals.


quake in one's boots
- трястись от страха
While walking along a dark alley, Tony was quaking in his boots.

queer as a three-dollar bill
- очень странный (как банкнота в 3 доллара)
What John showed me is the strangest thing I have ever seen; it is as queer as a three-dollar bill.

quick and dirty
- сделанный на скорую руку, тяп-ляп
The methods that the firm has chosen to cut expenses are quick and dirty.

quick as a flash
- с быстротой молнии, в мгновение ока
The lightening struck a tree in the garden; it happened quick as a flash.

quick as a wink
- очень быстро, молниеносно
I turned around to look at the speeding car, and quick as a wink it was gone.

quick as greased lightning
- очень быстро, мгновенно
My dog started chasing a cat, but the cat jumped up the fence quick as greased lightning.

quick on the draw
- быстро реагирующий, прыткий
The man was quick on the draw; he drew a gun and began shooting.

quick on the trigger
- импульсивный, быстро реагирующий
John is quick on the trigger; he acts and responds very fast.

quick on the uptake
- понятливый, смышлёный
In spite of his age, the little boy is quick on the uptake and does sums very well.

quiet as a mouse
- тихий как мышь
"Stay where you are till I come back and be as quiet as a mouse."


a race against time
- стремление выиграть время
It was a race against time as I was trying to meet the grant requirements.

a rain check
- бесплатный билет на ранее отложенное мероприятие
They were given a rain check for the performance that was cancelled because of the death of the leading actor.

a rain check
- просьба или обещание принять приглашение как-нибудь в другой раз
I couldn’t reject my aunt’s invitation to stay with her, so I decided to take a rain check.

a raw deal
- несправедливо суровое отношение
Ron got a raw deal; he was treated unfairly, I am sure.

a regular guy
- славный малый, молодчина
John is a regular guy; he gets along with everyone in the office.
a ripple of excitement
- волна возбуждённого шёпота
When he finished speaking, a long ripple of excitement passed through the audience.

a ripple of protest
- незначительный протест
There was only a ripple of protest when our boss made us stay at work after office hours.

a risk of rain/showers/thunderstorms
- возможность того, что пойдёт дождь; будет ливень, гроза
There was a risk of thunderstorms and they decided not to go the mountains that day.

a road-hog
- водитель, мешающий проезду другого транспорта
Leo is a regular road-hog; he always uses more than his share of the road.

a rolling stone
- перекати-поле (человек, который всё время переезжает с места на место)
James is a rolling stone type of person; you never know his whereabouts.


(can’t) stand (someone or something)
- не выносить кого-либо что-либо
I can’t stand porridge.

(not a) snowball’s chance in hell
- никакого шанса, ни малейшего шанса
If I thought that I had a snowball's chance in hell to get the job, I would apply for it.

(not to be) sneezed at
- пренебрежительно относиться, не считать важным
Helen’s project is important; it’s nothing to be sneezed at.

(on the) spur of the moment
- не раздумывая, под влиянием минуты, внезапно
Jenny’s blood was up, and on the spur of the moment she told her husband a lot of things she shouldn’t have.

a sacred cow
- что-либо никогда не подвергающееся критике
The ideas of my boss are a sacred cow that should never be criticized or laughed at.
a second thought
- дальнейшие соображения, пересмотр решения
"On second thought maybe I should join you to go on an excursion."

a shoo-in
- бесспорная кандидатура, “верняк”
Mr. Parker is a shoo-in to win the election.

a shot in the arm
- прилив энергии
I did a lot of work yesterday probably because of a shot in the arm.

a shot in the dark
- случайный догадка, догадка сделанная наобум
I imagined that his intentions were not quite decent though on my part it was a shot in the dark.

a show of hands
- голосование поднятием рук
It was proposed that we vote by a show of hands.


(the) third degree
- допрос с пристрастием, допрос с применением пытки
Mary’s husband is extremely jealous and she is often given the third degree.

a taste of (something)
- почувствовать вкус чего-либо
Adam got a taste of playing cricket while he was on holiday in Manchester.

a taste of things to come
- образец грядущих событий
The rent increase was a taste of things to come with the new owner of our apartment house.

a tempest in a teapot
- волнение из-за пустяков, “буря в стакане воды”
“Your difficulty is just a tempest in a teapot, and I am sure it will dissolve in a few days.”

a thorn in (someone's) side
- источник постоянного раздражения или неприятностей; “бельмо на глазу’
Julia was his brother’s wife and a thorn in his side.
a tough act to follow
- превосходное исполнение
Her performance of Desdemona was a tough act to follow in every sense.

a tough break
- неудачное событие, злоключение
“It was a tough break; my date didn't show up.”

a tower of strength
- надёжная опора
Sam is an affectionate husband who has been a tower of strength to Marcia all those years.

table a motion
- отложить обсуждение чего-либо (во время собрания)
They decided to table a motion to discuss the security issue at another meeting.

tag along with (someone)
- плестись за кем-либо
I saw two little kids tagging along with their mother.


ugly duckling
- гадкий утёнок
Nancy was the ugly duckling in her family, until she grew up.

unaccustomed to (someone or something)
- быть непривычным для кого-либо чего-либо
On the hike Bob soon got tired, because he was unaccustomed to walking.

under (close) scrutiny
- под пристальным вниманием
The ex-criminal was under close scrutiny of the police.

under a cloud
- быть в подавленном состоянии
Jenny has been under a cloud of depression since her parrot escaped.

under arrest
- быть под арестом
Bob Oliver was seen breaking into the neighbor’s cottage, and he soon found himself under arrest.

under certain circumstances/conditions
- при определённых условиях
Under no conditions are the students permitted to use cheat sheets at the exams.

under construction
- строящийся (объект)
We had to take the train to work while the expressway was under construction.

under control
- под контролем
The fire fighters soon took the fire in the restaurant under control.

under cover
- под прикрытием, тайно
The police officer Marlow did his work under cover.

under fire
- под огнём (критики)
The police officer was under fire for not conducting the interrogation properly.


vanish into thin air
- исчезнуть, раствориться в воздухе
Joe’s new camera just vanished into thin air and was never seen again.

variety is the spice of life
- разнообразие – острота жизни
It is believed that variety is the spice of life and I think it is true.

vent one's spleen
- избавиться от раздражения или злобы
I am very angry at the manager’s suggestion to transfer me to another department and I haven’t been able to vent my spleen so far.

verge on (something)
- граничить с чем-либо
The flood may verge on becoming a real disaster if the water rises a few more meters.

very last
- самый последний
I was lucky to have bought the very last tickets to the show.
very thing
- то, что надо
A couple of rugs is the very thing that I need to make my den comfortable.

very well
- очень хорошо
“Very well, I will do as you say.”

vicious circle
- заколдованный круг, порочный круг
Jane takes a lot of medicine to cure her asthma; I am afraid she might develop another illness from the medicine and will thus be caught in a vicious circle.

vim and vigor
- настойчивость, сила и энергия
My Grandfather is over seventy, but he is still full of vim and vigor.

vote down
- отклонить что-либо при голосовании
The question of opening a casino was raised and was immediately voted down.


(a) word to the wise
- умный понимает с полуслова
The boss had once spoken to Jerry about being late all the time, and he supposed that a word to the wise was enough.

(be at one's) wit’s end
- быть в растерянности
Mary was at her wit’s end whether to tell her husband about the incident or not.

(have) what it takes
- иметь способность или мужество
Steve really has what it takes to be successful in his career.

(not) worth a cent
- (не) стоить ни гроша
The house is falling to pieces and is not worth a cent.

wade into
- нападать, присоединяться к (драке)
Paul was quick to wade into the boys with his fists flying.

wait on (someone) hand and foot
- делать всё возможное для кого-либо, служить верой и правдой
Moira is a spoiled child because her parents wait on her hand and foot.

wait tables
- подавать еду (в ресторане или кафе)
To earn some pocket money Tina was waiting tables in the college cafeteria.

wait up (for someone)
- ждать кого-либо (не ложиться спать)
When I lived with my parents, either my mother or my father always waited up for me when I went out.

wait with bated breath
- ждать с нетерпением; ждать, затаив дыхание
Jack waited with bated breath for the results of his medical tests.

wait-and-see attitude
- нерешительная, выжидательная позиция
If you are uncertain about something, it’s always wise to take a wait-and-see attitude.


X marks the spot
- обозначение точного места
They looked at the map and saw that X marked the spot where the plane had crashed.


X marks the spot
- обозначение точного места
They looked at the map and saw that X marked the spot where the plane had crashed.


zero hour
- решительный час, час принятия решения, начало действия
On the day of the examination, as the zero hour was approaching, I grew more and more restless.

zero hour
- час начала атаки
Zero hour for the bombers to take off was the early hours of the morning.

zero in on
- сосредоточиться
We decided to zero in on grammar first.

zero in on
- прицелиться, нацелить
Big guns were zeroed in on the enemy fort.

zero-sum game
- выигрышно-проигрышная ситуация при которой, если выигрывает один, то неизменно проигрывает другой
It was a zero-sum game between the salesperson and the customer, and we couldn’t tell who would win and who would lose.

zonk out
- быстро заснуть, “вырубиться”
I couldn’t get a coherent word out of Stan as he had zonked out.

zoom in on (someone or something)
- электронное увеличение изображения во время фотографирования
The photographer zoomed in on the butterfly which was sitting on a flower.