Idioms Using Numbers: Among the various parts of speech in the English language, idioms are a part and this article contains some so that you can enrich your knowledge about it. The article has a group of non-literal phrases that we to describe something else.
Like in other languages, English also has idioms and people use idioms and phrases with numbers quite commonly everywhere.
This article provides a list of idioms with numbers a to z. It defines various idioms with numbers idioms and meaning in detail for your benefit and ease of identifying them.
Enrich your Vocabulary by practicing the English Idioms that are commonly used in everyday conversations and understand their actual meaning.
Name of Idioms with Numbers Idioms
List of Idioms with Numbers
- A million and one
- (A number) short of (something)
- All in one piece
- And counting
- A million dollar question
- A dime a dozen
- A stitch in time saves nine
- As easy as one-two-three
- A million miles away
- At sixes and sevens
- At the eleventh hour
- Bat a thousand
- Be in the seventh heaven
- Be in two minds (about something)
- Behind the eight ball
- Catch 22
- Cast the first stone
- Do (something) by the numbers
- Dressed up to the nines
- Deep six
- Feel like a million dollars
- Fifteen minutes of fame
- Five finger discount
- Five will get you ten
- Four eyes
- Four corners of the earth
- Four leaf clover
- Four letter word
- Forty winks
- Get the third degrees
- Have one over the eight
- Have one too many
- It takes two to tango
- Joe six pack
- Kill two birds with one stone
- Lesser of two evils
- Never in a million years
- Nine-to-five job
- Nine lives
- Nine times out of ten
- On all fours
- On cloud nine
- One for the road
- Of two minds
- Put in one’s two cents
- Queer as a three dollar bill
- Scattered to the four winds
- Seven day wonder
- Six feet under
- Square the circle
- Stand on one’s own two feet
- Take five
- That makes two of us
- Three cheers
- Three strikes
- Ten to one
- Two heads are better than one
- Two peas in a pod
- Two wrongs don’t make a right
- Two timer
- Up to eleven
- Whole nine yards
- Wouldn’t touch (something) with a ten-foot pole
- Zero in on
Meaning and Examples of some commonly used idioms with numbers
A million and one
Meaning: It means that someone has plenty of something.
Example: She came up with a million and one ideas for her excuse.
(A number) short of (something)
Meaning: This idiom is said euphemistically of someone mentally unstable or deficient; less than something part of a whole
Example: There is a slice of bread less than the loaf.
All in one piece
Meaning: to do something safely
Example: He got home from the trekking trip all in one piece.
Meaning: It means that the number mentioned before is increasing or decreasing.
Example: How many plates have you made? We have got two hundred and counting.
A million-dollar question
Meaning: a question that is very important and difficult to answer. It is sometimes used ironically.
Example: The million-dollar question is whether he should choose his former opponent as his current mate.
A dime a dozen
Meaning: It is used to describe something that is abundant and is very cheap.
Example: These glass cups might look very expensive, but trust me, they are a dime a dozen.
A stitch in time saves nine
Meaning: It means a prompt decision now will prevent problems later on.
Example: You can consider getting your car repaired now before you are stranded. After all, a stitch in time saves nine.
As easy as one-two-three
Meaning: It means that something is straightforward or easy.
Example: These equations are as easy as one-two-three! You ought to do them by yourself.
A million miles away
Meaning: It means noticeably distracted or lost in thought.
Example: Of course you don’t remember about the signature; you were a million miles away the entire time!
At sixes and sevens
Meaning: It means that someone is in a state of confusion and is not organized.
Example: I am at sixes and sevens now that the trip has been rescheduled and rearranged.
At the eleventh hour
Meaning: It means that someone or something has happened almost too late.
Example: I was shocked that they reached an arrangement at the eleventh hour after weeks of fighting.
Bat a thousand
Meaning: It means that someone has a perfect record.
Example: I’m batting a thousand this week to get an A in my exam.
Be in the seventh heaven
Meaning: It describes someone who is extremely happy about something.
Example: She has been in the seventh heaven ever since she got engaged.
Be in two minds (about something)
Meaning: It means that someone is not certain about something or has difficulty drawing up a conclusion.
Example: I’m in two minds about doing the internship.
Behind the eight ball
Meaning: It describes a challenging situation or at a disadvantage. An eight ball is the ball that we are supposed to hit into the pocket at last, but if the player hits it prematurely, the player will lose. Hence it is something that has to be avoided.
Example: If we don’t leave early tomorrow, we will be behind the eight balls, and I doubt we will be able to reach the mountain top by dusk.
Meaning: It refers to a problematic situation in which a person is denied the only solution due to the inherent circumstances.
Example: The acting business is caught 22 with no work unless you have an agent and no agent unless you have worked.
Cast the first stone
Meaning: This idiom means that someone is the first to criticize or attack someone.
Example: Well, let me be the first to cast the first stone. That movie was terrible.
Do (something) by the numbers
Meaning: It means that you have to follow the instructions exactly.
Example: You need not do this by the numbers, but if you see that you are stuck, you can go ahead and follow the instructions.
Dressed up to the nines
Meaning: It means that someone is wearing something to look glamorous and smart.
Example: He has to be dressed to the nines at this gala tonight
Meaning: to get rid of something or discard something.
Example: The legislators voted to deep-six the current government program.
Meaning: it means to discard or eliminate something or someone.
Example: The boss approves for raises next year, but the district manager went ahead and eighty-sixed them.
Feel like a million dollars
Meaning: It means that someone is feeling great, physically and otherwise.
Example: You look like a million dollars in that dress!
Fifteen minutes of fame
Meaning: It means that someone has short-lived publicity.
Example: The fifteen minutes of fame will do you no good if you want a long-lasting career.
Meaning: It is something that is shred or borne equally.
Example: We have a fifty-fifty chance of winning the competition.
Five finger discount
Meaning: It means to shoplift.
Example: You will get caught if you keep using your five-finger discount, you will end up in jail.
Five will get you ten
Meaning: It means that the chances are good that something will be a success.
Example: Five will get you ten that he is having an affair with his secretary.
Meaning: It is a mocking term for someone who wears glasses.
Example: Hasn’t four eyes shown up to class? He is always late.
Meaning: It means that something represents a loss
Example: The loss of more pocket is not the one to trust.
Four corners of the earth
Meaning: It means the areas that are the farthest reaches
Example: I have traveled to the four corners of the earth to collect the medallion.
Meaning: It means that something that is traditionally thought to be lucky and rare.
Example: You found a four-leaf clover? Wow, today is your lucky way!
Four letter word
Meaning: It refers to some slang since many of them start with four letters.
Example: Jim is suspended from school after the teacher heard him shout many four-letter words.
Meaning: To take a nap or a brief sleep
Example: If you have a baby for the first time, you will suddenly have to operate on forty winks at a time.
Get the third degrees
Meaning: It means to get interrogate or questioned intensely or thoroughly by someone.
Example: He got the third degree from the police regarding the crime.
Have one over the eight
Meaning: It means that a person is slightly drunk.
Example: From the way, he was walking and talking, it was obvious that he had one over the eight.
Have one too many
Meaning: It means that someone drank too much alcohol.
Example: I cannot drive since I have had too many drinks.
It takes two to tango
Meaning: When someone says this idiom, they think that a difficult situation or an argument cannot be the fault of only one person.
Example: His son blames mine for their fight at school, but I know it takes two to tango.
Meaning: an ordinary man or a blue-collar worker
Example: The Joe six-pack went to the bat after work.
Kill two birds with one stone
Meaning: It means that someone can solve two problems with one move.
Example: If I drop the parcel on the way to work, I can kill two birds with one stone.
Lesser of two evils
Meaning: This idiom means that something or someone is the less offensive or undesirable among the options.
Example: Both candidates are not well-liked, but she is shown to be the lesser of the two evils.
Never in a million years
Meaning: When someone never says in a million years, they mean never.
Example: Never in a million years did I think that I could become an actress!
Meaning: It describes a routine job in an office with the standard office hours.
Example: He said that he would never do a nine-to-five job.
Meaning: It is used to refer to a person who has survived despite having a near encounter with death or some disaster.
Example: I cannot believe that he survived after his parachute did not open mid-air; he must have nine lives!
Nine times out of ten
Meaning: It means almost always.
Example: Nine times out of ten, the first person you think is who is right for the job usually is.
On all fours
Meaning: It means that you are down on all your hands and knees.
Example: I had to go down on all fours to find my ring in the mud.
On cloud nine
Meaning: It means that you are very happy.
Example: I was on cloud nine when my mom bought me a computer.
One for the road
Meaning: It means to have a drink before leaving.
Example: Before we leave, let’s have one for the road.
Of two minds
Meaning: to be unable to decide or be certain about something or having two opinions about something
Example: I am of two minds about hiring him. Though he has a nice resume, he doesn’t have much experience.
Put in one’s two cents
Meaning: It means that you are asking someone to state their opinion.
Example: I am ready to put in my two cents at the meeting.
Queer as a three dollar bill
Meaning: Something that is completely obvious that something is fake or not genuine.
Example: The Company claims that they can double out money within the month, but it is obvious that the whole thing is as queer as a three-dollar bill.
Scattered to the four winds
Meaning: Something that is dispersed across a wide area.
Example: Our family has been scattered to the four winds, and now the kids are in different states.
Seven day wonder
Meaning: A person or something that generates interest for only a short time.
Example: The band’s fear is that they will become a seven day wonder and be soon forgotten when the next big hit comes.
Six feet under
Meaning: It means that someone is dead and has been buried.
Example: We are all going to be six feet under if the boss finds out what we did!
Square the circle
Meaning: It means to attempt an impossible task.
Example: Perry is trying to solve the puzzling but it is like squaring the circle!
Stand on one’s own two feet
Meaning: It means that someone is being independent and self-sufficient.
Example: Since he never left home after high school, he never learnt to stand on his own two feet.
Meaning: It means to take a brief rest of about five minutes.
Example: We can take five then get back on with the painting job.
That makes two of us
Meaning: It is used to mean that one has the same feelings or thoughts as someone else.
Example: I also believe in them. That makes two of us.
Meaning: It means to give three shouts of joy or approval to someone or for something.
Example: At long last, the week has come to an end; three cheers for the weekend!
Meaning: two aspects of someone or something that keeps them or it from being entirely successful
Example: He has got two strikes against him and has only one chance left.
Meaning: Someone who is in their twenties or is aged between twenty.
Example: I don’t remember Shila’s age, but she is twenty-something.
Ten to one
Meaning: It refers to something that is very likely to happen.
Example: I can feel that I am going to win ten to one.
Two heads are better than one
Meaning: it means that when we work as a team things, are done better and faster.
Example: When we went to the camping trip we understood that two heads are better than one.
Two peas in a pod
Meaning: If you say two peas in a pod you mean that two people are very similar in appearance or otherwise.
Example: They look like two peas in a pod. Are they married?
Two wrongs don’t make a right
Meaning: It means that seeking revenge for a hurtful or deceitful action is not an appropriate method to resolve a conflict.
Example: Just because he insulted you does not mean that it is ok for you to start a rumour about him, but two wrongs don’t make a right.
Meaning: It refers to someone who is unfaithful or a deceiver.
Example: Don’t trust the two-timer, her is not trust worthy.
Up to eleven
Meaning: It means something is to an intense or at an extreme degree.
Example: Some of the best nights we had were the time we spent aimlessly driving up to eleven.
Whole nine yards
Meaning: It means the entirety of what is possible or available
Example: Shelly went the whole nine yards to get the best toppings for the ice cream bar.
Wouldn’t touch (something) with a ten-foot pole
Meaning: It means that something is so bad that it is best to engage with it.
Example: You might think that he is attractive but I wouldn’t touch him with a ten-foot pole since he is a creep.
Zero in on
Meaning: It means to focus closely on something or to take an aim at something.
Example: We have has consultants and worker in the factory for two weeks and they are zeroing in on our production situation.