Anyone who seeks to add more ‘color’ to their understanding and usage of the English language, it is highly recommended to learn as many idioms as possible. Though you can get your point across without using idioms, the nuances, subtleties, and history of the language can only be understood if you are aware of idiomatic usage. So here goes, some common color idioms to embellish your vocabulary:
Green with envy
Meaning: To be extremely jealous or envious
Usage: Rohan turned green with envy when he heard Shashwat, a student of Pep Talk India, speak English fluently.
Out of the blue
Meaning: Totally unexpectedly, without warning
Usage: The students were blissfully enjoying their vacation when, out of the blue, the exams were announced by the college authorities.
Meaning: A situation or activity where the rules are not defined or known.
Usage: Kartik asked for some leeway in the internal exams owing to his poor health, but his instructor was wary of taking any action since it was a gray area.
Meaning: Official bureaucratic procedure or routine that results in delay or inaction on a project.
Usage: India is placed at a lowly 130 position on the economic freedom index rankings owing to excessive red-tapism prevailing in the country.
Meaning: Very special or royal treatment.
Usage: After donning some high-end designer clothes, Mayank was given the red-carpet treatment everywhere he went.
Give the green light
Meaning: Give the approval or permission to someone to proceed with a certain task or action.
Usage: The latest season of Game of Thrones was greenlit by HBO.
Pot calling the kettle black
Meaning: A situation in which a person criticizes or accuses someone for doing something that they themselves are guilty of.
Usage: The politician calling his rival “corrupt to the core” was a case of the pot calling the kettle black after the CBI raid revealed black money stored at his home.
Meaning: A member of the family who is regarded as a disgrace or embarrassment
Usage: Vishal was considered the black sheep of the Kapoor family because of his addiction to drugs.
Once in a blue moon
Meaning: Happening very rarely
Usage: What’s the point of purchasing a limited edition PS4 if you will use it once in a blue moon?
Meaning: When you are extremely pleased with something.
Usage: Harshita was tickled pink when she heard of her promotion by the manager.
Meaning: A lie thought to be insignificant and justified, especially when it results in avoiding hurting the feelings of someone.
Usage: Tushar told Shivani that her voice was mellifluous. He had to tell this white lie because he was wary of her volatile temper and tantrums.
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