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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Idioms of the Heart for Valentine's Day

 Happy Valentine's Day! 

 wrote this last year, but idioms don't change over a year, so enjoy!! 

Valentine's day is a day when lovers wear their hearts on their sleeves, so I thought it would be fun for you to learn a few idioms of the heart so that you could tell your loved one that your heart skips a beat every time he or she walks into the room.  

Of course, not all idioms with the word "heart"  send a message of love. In fact, sometimes the meanings can be very surprising.
wear your heart on your sleeve: When you wear your heart on your sleeve, you show your feelings about someone, or something very openly. . 
Example:  Everybody knew that Tom really wanted to go out with Maire because he wore his heart on his sleeve every time he was around her. 

pour your heart out ( to someone)"When  you pour your heart out to someone, you tell them them all your problems, fears, hopes or dreams.  You have a very intimate conversation. 

Example:  My daughter poured her heart out to me when she broke up with her husband. 

a heart of gold: When people have a heart of gold, they are extremely kind and generous. 

Example:  My grandmother had such a heart of gold that every time she saw someone in trouble she always tried to help them.

get to the heart of the matterWhen you get to the heart of the matter, you understand the most important thing about something. 

Example:  It took a long time, but we finally got to the heart of the matter about the problem in the office, and were finally able to discuss it. 

heart is in the right place: Your heart is in the right place  when you have good intentions even if there are bad results.

Example:   Tom's gifts are always unsuitable, but his heart is in the right place, so I don't want  to hurt him by telling him he bought me the wrong thing. 

a bleeding heart  is someone who feels too much sympathy for people such as poor people, criminals or drug addicts. 

Example: My father is such a bleeding heart that he gives money to every bum on the street who asks for it even if they don't have a good reason.

heart goes out to (someone): You heart goes out to someone when you feel sympathy or sorry about something bad that has happened to them.  

ExampleMy heart goes out to  all the people who lost family and friends in the recent eathquake.  

lose heart:  If you lose heart, you feel discouraged because you have failed, or you have lost hope about achieving a goal. You think something is too difficult and you want to stop trying. 

Example:  My friend lost heart when she failed her driver's test for the third time. 


take heart:  When you take heart, you start to feel more hopeful and confident. We often tell people to "take heart" when we are trying to encourage them or make them feel better about something. 
Example: House owners can take heart from the news that housing prices are on the increase again. 

break someone's heart When you break someone's  heart, you make them feel sad or hopeless     (usually because of love or a similar loss) 

Example: My father broke my mother's heart when he told her he wanted a divorce because she still loved him.

have a heart! We tell people to have a heart when we want to say " don't be unkind or do something mean or cruel."

Example  The students asked the teacher to have a heart when she told them they would have  homework during the Christmas holidays. 


 heart skips a beat: Your heart skips a beat when you are startled or excited from surprise, joy or fear.

Example:  My heart skipped a beat when I realized  that I might win the lottery since I had five of the six numbers that I needed.

heart is not in (something): When your heart is not in something, it means you have lost interest in it.  

Example:   John is not working very hard on the project becausehis heart is not in it. He would prefer to be doing something completely different. . 

a change of heart : if you have a change of heart, you change the way you feel or think about something, or you change your mind. 

Example:  I refused to let my daughter go to the dance.But, when I realized that the teachers would be supervising, I had a change of heart and decided to allow her to attend. 

a heart to heart (talk): When you have a heart to heart talk with someone, you have a deep, sincere and intimate talk with someone about personal feelings or problems. 

Example:  My girlfriend and I had a long heart to heart last night after whether or not she should break up with her boyfriend after he cheated on her. .

heart sinks:  Your heart sinks at the moment you become disappointed or discouraged. 

Example:  Jane's heart sank when she opened the letter and realized that the university had rejected her application.   

a heart of stone: When someone has a heart of stone, they are cold and have no pity or sympathy. 

Example:  The man who murdered his wife and children had a heart of stone.

learn something by heart: when you something by heart, you learn learn it perfectly so that you can 
repeat it by memory. 

Example:  I had to learn many poems by heart when I was a young girl. Today, young people don't do this. . 

heart stands still: your heart stands still  when you are very frightened about something.

Example:  My heart stood still when the car almost hit my daughter as she was crossing the street. 

heavy heart: You have a heavy heart when you feel very sad, or feel weighed down with sorrow or sadness.

Example:  We waved goodbye to my friends and family with a heavy heart because we didn't know when we would see them again. 

 heart is in your mouth: Your heart is in your mouth when you are very frightened or terrified . 

Example: Tom's heart was in his mouth  and his heart was beating loudly as he ran away from the two  men who were trying to steal his wallet.

have your heart set on something:  When you have your heart set on something, you want something very badly 

Example: I was very disappointed when I did not get the job as manager because I had my heart set on it. 

How well do you know the idioms?  Try the quiz below  

Practice in Speaking and/ or Writing 


  1. I know one more: "somebody's heart leaps", used to say that somebody has a sudden feeling of happiness or excitement. For example:

    My heart leapt at the news.

  2. I found your blog very helpful for me as an ESL learner. Your post help me very much improving my English. Although your blog is hard to be loaded. You should add a " jump break or read more " .

    You can use blogger jumpbreak or add custom readmore. You can search on Google how to make a readmore on blogspot. Make it as simple as summary on the read more so there are only few text to load.

    The pages are hard to load especially those with video and large images. You might delete useless large images. I love to visit your blog but it takes long time and sometime crass my browser.

    Thank you for this lovely blog hopefully I have chance to see this blog again

  3. Hi Michelle - just to say that this is one very nice blog - full of good things.

  4. very nice share. happy valentine... :)

  5. This is totally awesome.Although variety of article on this topic,this article contains some of the precious
    points which were never be read in other articles.
    Online dictionary


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