Newsletter: The Green Shoots


This is the time of year when plants in the garden come back to life and you have the feeling that everything is starting up all over again. It is Spring time in the UK and of course it is Easter throughout the world and that can also mean a chocolate Easter egg for some members of the community. If you want to hear more about how this three letter word has found its way into idiomatic English, you could read my latest newsletter: The Green Shoots The Green Shoots


When do we use the phrase " as it were ". What does it mean? Give me some examples
The lessons are beautiful . Keep on sending them to me Kulandairaj

This parenthetic phrase is quite difficult to understand/explain. It is used to indicate that a word or statement is perhaps not exact though practically right (OED):
“so to speak”, “in a manner of speaking”, “as if such were so”.

Luckily, Conchita has already found some examples for other learners on this site:

Nice writing, could you explain more about idioms and when could we exactly use them?
I enjoy reading your articles, they make increase my vocabulary, specially when I am living in France and since I learned French I lost some of my English knowledge :frowning:

thank a lot for sending me unforgettable idiom. It’s really valuable. Thank youuuuu full

Thanks for all

Dear sir,
I received from you a lot of articles and idiom.Thankyou very much.Now i am planning to do IELTS TEST preparation. Help me.

Dear Sir,
I received with knowledge. Thank you for your beautiful service that applying golden eggs. It’s beautiful forum.

The idiom “teach your grandmother to suck eggs” is interesting. I found out the same idiom in Vietnamese : Someone likes to teach another about what he does not understand well, we call him “Egg is more clever/smarter than duck”.

Are you think they mean the same?


Those two sayings are not quite the same.

To ‘teach your grandmother to suck eggs’ is to set about trying to teach someone something they already know very well.

Nice and funny articole, thank you alan

It’s amazing article. Thanks

Thank you

thank you>>>i feel that articles containes diffrent usefull subject >>>shaimaa

Thank you. It is very good to know all these expressions. I’d never guess some of their minings.

Dear Alan :
First I excuse not to be present here for a long time, somehow and somewhat I engaged in many tasks of normal duty, perhaps the language is the most higher of our burden as we are students of translation, the process, however, is not easy, but interesting that I here ask you this question:
How can we differ between the idiom and collocation? for example one who said (( once in a blue moon )) of course one may be said it is a type of collocation since the colour blue can collocate with the item moon , but in Arabic or other languages it does not so.
Of coure I know what is the equivalance in Arabic (( something is rear to happen or found )). What is exactly classified in English is it a type of collocation or idiom?
Again dear sir don’t be disturb to address you by the bare name, since I have found you or seen you just a nearest friend , friend of the language I have loved it too much , the language I made my conflict to choose the long deals of ways.
thank you…MMA

let us be clear, may be you don’t understang what I meant by previous question:
Is the expression ( once in a blue moon ) idiom or collocation?


I follow what you are saying and will try to suggest a difference. A collocation is an expression or saying or simply a group of words that have developed together over time and have now become accepted as standard. An idiom invariably has a history as to why certain words are used to express an idea or thought but it is not possible to decipher the meaning from the words themselves because you have to know the origin of the idiom and how it has developed.


thanks for these nice idioms
ali khalaf there is idiom says use your head = think

I have been listening your pronunciation many times, It’s really helps.
Tanks Alan you are the best.