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8 ‘Cat’ Idioms

Published by My Lingua Academy on

If you love cats as much as I do, then you might be interested in learning these ‘CAT’ idioms:


When the cat’s away, the mice will play – to describe what happens when the teacher leaves the classroom/when your boss is away.
Ex: They shouldn’t be so loud, but the teacher left the classroom, and when the cat’s away, the mice will play.


Put the cat among pigeons – there’s going to be a trouble because of something someone had said or done.
Ex: Don’t tell them about our competitors’ success, it’ll put cats among pigeons.


There isn’t enough room to swing a cat – describe a room as too small.
Ex: My office is so small; there isn’t enough room to swing a cat.


Let the cat out of the bag – tell a secret, usually unintentionally.
Ex: We’ve been preparing a surprise party for Fiona’s birthday, but Len let the cat out of the bag and told her.


Curiosity killed the cat – warn someone not to try to find out someone’s private matters.
Ex: You shouldn’t ask Jill so many personal questions; you may insult her. Curiosity killed the cat.


Like a cat on hot bricks – be nervous.
Ex: He’s been walking around all morning like a cat on hot bricks.


There’s more than one way to skin a cat – there are different ways of doing something.
Ex: Our negotiations may have failed this time but there’s more than one way to skin a cat.


Not have a cat in hell’s chance – not have a chance at all.
Ex: They don’t have a cat in hell’s chance of buying a decent house with that amount of money.

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My Lingua Academy is an online school of English language. We give one-on-one lessons to students of English of all ages and all levels of knowledge all around the world. With us you can prepare for written assignments and exams, attend a general or business English course, or have conversation classes with qualified native English teachers who have years of experience.

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