Idioms

Learn idioms with comprehensive meaning, examples and origin details.

Idioms

Idioms beginning with M

must have

must have

Meaning

  • to be done in a compulsory manner
  • to compulsorily have (something)
  • something that is an essential item (though not necessarily for living)
  • a desirable item

Example Sentences

  1. The must haves this season include a tunic and a head scarf.
  2. I must have the document on my desk by noon, no later.
  3. She must have something to say to him otherwise why would she look so restless and uncomfortable in his presence?
  4. She gets these pregnancy cravings and has been saying that she must have some ice cream right now.
  5. My children must have a bicycle each.
  6. It was made very clear to the salesman that we must have all the accessories with the car.
  7. If she must have a small wedding then you should let her do it her way, don’t be such controlling parents.
  8. I must have something to eat right now or I might faint.
  9. Do you know about the must have collection by Louis Vuitton?
  10. The paintings by this artist are a must have for any good collection to be complete.

Origin

The phrase is usually used as a fashion advice and is speculated to have originated from the same genre.

make sense

make sense

Meaning

  • to be able to reason something out
  • to make someone understand something through reasoning

Example Sentences

  1. The presentation did not make sense at all. It was way off the topic.
  2. She has started making sense about her career now and I would like to let her try things out.
  3. He does not make sense when he speaks about starting such a kind of venture. He does not have a plan and you better not invest in something so haphazard.
  4. Can you please start making some sense? We are not following what you are trying to say.
  5. Every word she says makes sense to my daughter. I am glad that she has chosen such a good role model.
  6. The story only makes sense when my father narrates it. When I tried it just sounded like some jibber jabber.
  7. You cannot make sense to him right now. Give him some time to come out of the shock of it all at least.
  8. Can you come along to speak to the principal? I am not going to be able to make sense to him after such a disaster.

Origin

The phrase originates from rational thoughts that is considered by reasonable people as valid.

made it

you made it
or I made it
or we made it

Meaning

  • used to indicated the completion of a task
  • used to indicate someone’s victory
  • used to indicate someone’s arrival

Example Sentences

  1. “It is so amazing that you made it because we heard that it was a very difficult task.”
  2. “Hey, you made it! I thought you were out of town all summer?”
  3. “I heard that you made a whole week without a single drop of alcohol. Isn’t that great?”
  4. “I’m so glad that you made it! I really didn’t think you would come.”
  5. “Hey Dan, you made it! That is such an incredible news.”
  6. “I spent the entire day wondering if you would make it and then suddenly I realized that he would be busy as it was a working day.”
  7. “Jason looked forward to spending time with his dad after a year but he didn’t seem quite sure if his dad would make it.
  8. “I still look at my parents after 25 years of marriage and wonder how they made it so far.”
  9. “I knew you would make it and I believed in you since the very first day we met.”
  10. “It makes me proud to say that you made it into the university on your first attempt.”
  11. That was a real tough work but together we made it now.
  12. Oh, man I didn’t want to cross the river, but finally I made it.

Origin

The idiom ‘you made it’ has no known origin.

mum’s the word

mum’s the word

Meaning

  • keep quiet and say nothing
  • do not say anything or give away a secret
  • keep silent and not reveal something

Example Sentences

  1. We are throwing a party for our friend Jeremy, but its a surprise, so don’t tell him anything about it. Mum’s the word.
  2. I’ll tell you about our secret hiding place, but mum’s the word; don’t tell anyone about it.
  3. Mum’s the word about tonight’s plan. We don’t want all and sundry to gatecrash into our private gathering.
  4. The information I am going to reveal to you is highly confidential, so mum’s the word.
  5. I know where he has gone, but I am not revealing it to anyone against his wishes, so mum’s the word.
  6. I’ll let you on our little secret, but mum’s the word: if anyone else gets to know of it, we’ll be in big trouble.
  7. I’ve heard the news, but mum’s the word till we get confirmation.

Origin

The phrase originated around the 17th century. An earlier version of the phrase was “mum is counsel”, and was used in the 16th century. The earliest print reference of this exact phrase can be found in “A Walk Around London and Westminster – The Works of Mr. Thomas Brown” from 1720.

match made in heaven

match made in heaven

Meaning

  • a combination of two people that is perfect in every way
  • two people so well suited to each other that their marriage is sure to be happy and successful
  • a marriage that is happy and successful because the partners are very compatible
  • two people who are perfect for each other

Example Sentences

  1. Jules and Nora are a match made in heaven. They love doing things together and cannot bear to be away from each other.
  2. I hope Lily and Tim get married soon. They are really a match made in heaven.
  3. My brother and his wife are not only very supportive of each other, but they also have similar interests. They are truly a match made in heaven.
  4. Everyone had thought that Bill and Marge were a match made in heaven; but when they announced their separation last month, everyone was shocked.
  5. Looking back at their thirty years of marriage with fond memories, Greg and Tracy realized that theirs had indeed been a match made in heaven.
  6. At my friend’s wedding, everyone agreed that the couple was a match made in heaven.

Origin
This phrase is based on the belief that divine forces have a hand in making two compatible people meet and pair up. The exact origin is not known.

marry in haste, repent at leisure

marry in haste, repent at leisure

Meaning

  • if you marry someone without knowing the person well, you will later regret your decision to marry
  • those who rush into a marriage spend a long time repenting it later
  • if you marry someone without first carefully considering your decision, you will feel sorry for it later

Example Sentences

  1. Sally and Bob had hardly known each other for a few months before they decided to get married, and now they are having big problems. Marry in haste, repent at leisure!
  2. I feel you are rushing into your marriage; you don’t even know him that well. Haven’t you heard of the saying “marry in haste, repent at leisure”?
  3. With George and Susan, its a case of marry in haste, repent at leisure. They met at a friends wedding, fell in love immediately and decided to marry too soon. Now they are very unhappy together.
  4. I know she is nice girl, but I want to think about it before I decide to marry her. I don’t want to marry in haste and repent at leisure.
  5. She wanted some time to consider his proposal of marriage; she had heard of the saying “marry in haste, repent at leisure”.

Origin
This expression first originated in print in 1693, in “The Old Batchelour” by William Congreve.

mumbo jumbo

mumbo jumbo

Meaning

  • Something that does not make sense.
  • A speech which was meaningless.
  • A religious ritual that is outdated and/or considered frivolous.

Example Sentences

  1. I do not believe in this mumbo jumbo, human life should be valued far more than some ritual that one is not willing to forego.
  2. The politician made a right fool of himself with all that mumbo jumbo on the stage. Do not think he is going to be voted for this time.
  3. What is all this mumbo jumbo? How can educated people like you waste so much time with such rituals?
  4. It is often people who do not understand the full meaning of religion that end up in such mumbo jumbo.
  5. She is just a kid, most of what she says is mumbo jumbo.

Origin
In the year 1738, a writer called Francis Moore used this expression in the publication titled ‘Travels into the inland parts of Africa’. It was not used in the sense that it is used today back then. In 1858, ‘The Saturday Review’ published it to mean what it stands for in the current years. The origination of the phrase comes from a masked dancer in religious functions called “Maamajomboo”. The exact phrase was also the name of a West African God.

man’s best friend

man’s best friend

Meaning

  • It refers to animals that are of use to human beings, mostly used to address dogs.
  • Loyalty and valuable services that dogs provide to human beings make them worthy of being called man’s best friend.
  • Dog

Example Sentences

  1. When his dog died he cried for many days in the memory of his only best friend.
  2. A dog is undoubtedly a man’s best friend.

Origin
Dogs were used for hunting and defense before the start of the 18th century. Post that they have been domesticated as pets. It is not certain about the origination of this phrase since from the time dogs have become pets, their services have been valued far more. In fact, it is considered one of the reasons why dogs were taken as pets from a utility animal. The phrase is said to have originated in the New York Literary Journal in 1821.

The phrase became popular in 1870, in Missouri, United States of America, a farmer shot his neighbours dog. This resulted in a law suit. In the duration of the law suit, the lawyer of the dog’s family provided many a references to the services and the loyalty of the said dog. He even gave a eulogy in which he referred to dogs in general as man’s best friend.

miss the boat

miss the boat

also miss the bus

Meaning:

  • miss a chance
  • being too slow to take advantage of an opportunity
  • to lose an opportunity by being slow to act
  • to miss out on something

Example:

  1. The discounted price sale ended today and I just missed the boat on making a great deal.
  2. He missed the boat when he did not apply for the job in time.
  3. If you don’t pay attention in class, you’ll miss the boat and do badly in your exams.
  4. There were tickets available for the match till last week, but you have missed the boat by waiting till today.
  5. It was widely expected that he would get the funding, but he missed the boat by not keeping his appointment.
  6. In this competitive scenario, if you don’t keep yourself abreast of latest developments, you are going to miss the boat.
  7. There are others waiting to grab an opportunity like this; if you don’t act fast, you are going to miss the boat.
  8. He did not turn up for the trials, so he missed the boat to be in the team for the main event.

Origin:
This phrase has been in use since the 1900s.

method to madness

method to madness

also method in madness

Meaning:

  • a purpose in doing something that is seemingly crazy
  • there’s a reason for someone’s strange behavior
  • there’s a plan behind the odd behavior of a person

Example:

  1. You may be thinking that I have gone crazy, but there’s a method to my madness.
  2. When she’s working on her painting, it would seem that she’s out of her mind, but when she finishes, you’ll see that there’s method in her madness.
  3. They way the houses were built seemed strange, but when we heard of the natural calamities affecting the region, we realized there was method to the madness.
  4. They have a crazy schedule, but taking all things into account, there’s a method to their madness.
  5. These are turbulent times, but it must come to an end sometime. There must be some method to this madness.
  6. They are selling it at a throwaway price, but they have plan to recover their money. There’s a method to their madness.
  7. He used to live a very disorganized life, but later we realized that there was method in his madness.
  8. He keeps talking to himself loudly, but he insists there is a method in his madness.

Origin:
Originated from Shakespeare’s Hamlet in 1602.

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