Слова на букву come-does (459) Словарь американских идиом
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Слова на букву come-does (459)

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come again
{v.}, {informal} Please repeat; please say that again. - Usually used as a command. * /"Harry has just come into a fortune," my wife said. "Come again? " I asked her, not ...
come alive
or[come to life] {v.} 1. {informal} To become alert or attentive; wake up and look alive; become active. * /When Mr. Simmons mentioned money, the boys came alive./ ...
come along
{v.} To make progress; improve; succeed. * /He was coming along well after the operation./ * /Rose is coming right along on the piano./
come apart at the seams
{v. phr.}, {slang}, {informal} To become upset to the point where one loses self-control and composure as if having suffered a sudden nervous breakdown. * /After his ...
come around
See: COME ROUND.
come at
{v.} 1. To approach; come to or against; advance toward. * /The young boxer came at the champion cautiously./ 2. To understand (a word or idea) or master (a skill); ...
come back
{v.}, {informal} 1. To reply; answer. * /The lawyer came back sharply in defense of his client./ * /No matter how the audience heckled him, the comedian always had an ...
come back to earth
or[come down to earth] {v. phr.} To return to the real world; stop imagining or dreaming; think and behave as usual. * /After Jane met the movie star it was hard for her to come ...
come by
{v.} To get; obtain; acquire. * /A good job like that is hard to come by./ * /Money easily come by is often easily spent./ * /How did she come by that money?/
come clean
{v. phr.}, {slang} To tell all; tell the whole story; confess. * /The boy suspected of stealing the watch came clean after long questioning./
come down
{v.} 1. To reduce itself; amount to no more than. - Followed by "to". * /The quarrel finally came down to a question of which boy would do the dishes./ Syn.: BOIL ...
come down hard on
{v.}, {informal} 1. To scold or punish strongly. * /The principal came down hard on the boys for breaking the window./ 2. To oppose strongly. * /The minister in his ...
come down in the world
{v. phr.} To lose a place of respect or honor, become lower (as in rank or fortune). * /The stranger plainly had come down a long way in the world./ Compare: DOWN ON ...
come down off one's high horse
{v. phr.} To become less arrogant; to assume a more modest disposition. * /The boastful candidate for Congress quickly came down off his high horse when he was soundly ...
come down on like a ton of bricks
{v. phr.}, {slang} To direct one's full anger at somebody. * /When the janitor was late for work, the manager came down on him like a ton of bricks./
come down to earth
See: COME BACK TO EARTH.
come down with
{v.}, {informal} To become sick with; catch. * /We all came down with the mumps./ * /After being out in the rain, George came down with a cold./
come from far and wide
{v. phr.} To originate or hail from many different places. * /The students at this university come from far and wide and speak many languages./
come full circle
{v. phr.}, {informal} 1. To become totally opposed to one's own earlier conviction on a given subject. * /Today's conservative businessperson has come full circle from ...
come hell or high water
{adv. phr.}, {informal} No matter what happens; whatever may come. * /Grandfather said he would go to the fair, come hell or high water./ Compare: COME WHAT MAY, ...
come home to roost
See: CHICKENS COME HOME TO ROOST.
come in for
{v.} To receive. * /He came in for a small fortune when his uncle died./ * /His conduct came in for much criticism./
come in handy
{v. phr.}, {informal} To prove useful. * /Robinson Crusoe found tools in the ship which came in handy when he built a house./ * /The French he learned in high school came in ...
come into
{v.} To receive, especially after another's death; get possession of. * /He came into a lot of money when his father died./ * /He came into possession of the farm after his ...
come into one's own
{v. phr.} To receive the wealth or respect that you should have. * /John's grandfather died and left him a million dollars; when John is 21, he will come into his ...
come of
{v.} 1. To result from. * /After all the energy we spent on that advertising campaign, absolutely nothing came of it./ 2. To become of; happen to. * /"Whatever became of ...
come of age
See: OF AGE.
come off
{v.} 1. To take place; happen. * /The picnic came off at last, after being twice postponed./ 2. {informal} To do well; succeed. * /The attempt to bring the quarreling couple ...
come off it
also[get off it] {v. phr.}, {slang} Stop pretending; bragging, or kidding; stop being silly. - Used as a command. * /"So I said to the duchess..." Jimmy began. "Oh, come off ...
come off second best
{v. phr.} To not win first but only second, third, etc. place. * /Our home team came off second best against the visitors./ * /Sue complains that she always comes off ...
come on
{v.} 1. To begin; appear. * /Rain came on toward morning./ * /He felt a cold coming on./ 2. To grow or do well; thrive. * /The wheat was coming on./ * /His business ...
come on strong
{v. phr.}, {slang} To overwhelm a weaker person with excessively strong language, personality, or mannerisms; to insist extremely strongly and claim something with ...
come one's way
{v. phr.} To be experienced by someone; happen to you. * /Tom said that if the chance to become a sailor ever came his way, he would take it./ * /I hope bad luck isn't ...
come out
{v.} 1. {Of a girl:} To be formally introduced to polite society at about age eighteen, usually at a party; begin to go to big parties, * /In society, girls come out when they ...
come out for
{v. phr.} To support; declare oneself in favor of another, especially during a political election. * /Candidates for the presidency of the United States are anxious for the ...
come out in the open
{v. phr.} 1. To reveal one's true identity or intentions. * /Fred finally came out in the open and admitted that he was gay./ 2. To declare one's position openly. * /The ...
come out with
{v. phr.} 1. To make a public announcement of; make known. * /He came out with a clear declaration of his principles./ 2. To say. * /He comes out with the funniest remarks you ...
come over
{v.} To take control of; cause sudden strong feeling in; happen to. * /A sudden fit of anger came over him./ * /A great tenderness came over her./ * /What has come over ...
come round
or[come around] {v.} 1. To happen or appear again and again in regular order. * /And so Saturday night came around again./ * /I will tell him when he comes round again./ 2. ...
come through
{v.}, {informal} To be equal to a demand; meet trouble or a sudden need with success; satisfy a need. * /When the baseball team needed a hit, Willie came through ...
come to
{v.} (stress on "to") 1. To wake up after losing consciousness; get the use of your senses back again after fainting or being knocked out. * /She fainted in the store ...
come to a dead end
{v. phr.} To reach a point from which one cannot proceed further, either because of a physical obstacle or because of some forbidding circumstance. * /Our car came ...
come to blows
{v. phr.} To begin to fight. * /The two quarreling boys came to blows after school./ * /The two countries came to blows because one wanted to be independent from the other./
come to grief
{v. phr.} To have a bad accident or disappointment; meet trouble or ruin; end badly; wreck; fail. * /Bill came to grief learning to drive a car./ * /Nick's hopes for a ...
come to grips with
{v. phr.} 1. To get hold of (another wrestler) in close fighting. * /After circling around for a minute, the two wrestlers came to grips with each other./ 2. To ...
come to hand
{v. phr.} To be received or obtained. * /Father's letter was mailed from Florida last week and came to hand today./ * /The new books came to hand today./ * /New information ...
come to heel
See: TO HEEL.
come to life
See: COME ALIVE.
come to light
{v. phr.} To be discovered; become known; appear. * /John's thefts from the bank where he worked came to light when the bank examiners made an inspection./ * /When the old ...
come to mind
{v. phr.} To occur to someone. * /A new idea for the advertising campaign came to mind as I was reading your book./
come to nothing
also {formal}[come to naught] {v. phr.} To end in failure; fail; be in vain. * /The dog's attempts to climb the tree after the cat came to nothing./
come to one's senses
{v. phr.} 1. Become conscious again; wake up. * /The boxer was knocked out and did not come to his senses for several minutes./ * /The doctors gave Tom an anesthetic ...
come to pass
{v. phr.}, {literary} To happen; occur. * /Strange things come to pass in troubled times./ * /It came to pass that the jailer visited him by night./ * /His hopes of ...
come to terms
{v. phr.} To reach an agreement. * /Management and the labor union came to terms about a new arrangement and a strike was prevented./
come to the point
or[get to the point] {v. phr.} To talk about the important thing; reach the important facts of the matter; reach the central question or fact. * /Henry was giving a lot ...
come to think of it
{v. phr.}, {informal} As I think again; indeed; really. * /Come to think of it, he has already been given what he needs./ * /Come to think of it, I should write my ...
come true
{v.} To really happen; change from a dream or a plan into a fact. * /It took years of planning and saving, but their seagoing vacation came true at last./ * /It was a ...
come up
{v.} 1. To become a subject for discussion or decision to talk about or decide about. * /"He was a good salesman, and price never came up until the very last," Mary said./ ...
come up in the world
or[rise in the world] {v. phr.} To gain success, wealth, or importance in life; rise to a position of greater wealth or importance. * /He had come up in the world since ...
come up smelling like a rose
{v. phr.} To escape from a difficult situation or misdeed unscathed or without punishment. * /A is predicted that Congressman Brown, in spite of the ...
come up to
{v. phr.} To equal. * /The meals cooked in most restaurants do not come up to those prepared at home./
come up with
{v. phr.} 1. To offer. * /We can always depend on John Smith to come up with a good solution for any problem we might have./ 2. To produce on demand. * /I won't be able ...
come upon
See: COME ON(3).
come what may
{adv. phr.} Even if troubles come; no matter what happens; in spite of opposition or mischance. * /Charles has decided to get a college education, come what may./ * /The ...
come-on
{n.}, {slang} An attractive offer made to a naive person under false pretenses in order to gain monetary or other advantage. * /Joe uses a highly successful come-on when he ...
comeback
{n.}, {v. phr.}, {slang}, {citizen's band radio jargon} A return call. * /Thanks for your comeback./
comedown
{n.} Disappointment; embarrassment; failure. * /It was quite a comedown for Al when the girl he took for granted refused his marriage proposal./
comfort
See: COLD COMFORT.
comfortable as an old shoe
{adj. phr.}, {informal} Pleasant and relaxed; not stiff, strict or too polite; easy to talk and work with. * /The stranger was as comfortable as an old shoe, and we soon ...
coming and going
or[going and coming] {adv. phr.} 1. Both ways; in both directions. * /The truck driver stops at the same cafe coming and going./ * /John was late. He got punished both ...
coming out
See: COME OUT(1).
coming out party
{n. phr.} A debutante party in which a young girl is formally introduced to society. * /Coming out parties used to be more popular in the early twentieth century ...
coming-out
{adj.} Introducing a girl to polite society. * /Mary's parents gave her a coming-out party when she was 17./
comings and goings
{n. pl.}, {informal} 1. Times of arriving and going away; movements. * /I can't keep up with the children's comings and goings./ 2. Activities; doings; business. * /Mary ...
command module
{n.}, {Space English} 1. One of the three main sections of the basic Apollo spacecraft. It weighs six tons and is cone shaped. It contains crew compartments and from it ...
commission
See: IN COMMISSION or INTO COMMISSION, OUT OF COMMISSION.
common
See: IN COMMON.
common ground
{n.} Shared beliefs, interests, or ways of understanding; ways in which people are alike. * /Bob and Frank don't like each other because they have no common ground./ ...
common as an old shoe
{adj. phr.}, {informal} Not showing off; not vain; modest; friendly to all. * /Although Mr. Jones ran a large business, he was common as an old shoe./ * /The most ...
common touch
{n.} The ability to be a friend of the people; friendly manner with everyone. * /Voters like a candidate who has the common touch./
company
See: KEEP COMPANY, PART COMPANY.
company man
{n.}, {informal} A worker who always agrees with management rather than labor. - Usually used to express dislike or disapproval. * /Joe was a company man and refused to ...
compare notes
{v. phr.}, {informal} To exchange thoughts or ideas about something; discuss together. * /Mother and Mrs. Barker like to compare notes about cooking./
compliment
See: RETURN THE COMPLIMENT.
conclusion
See: JUMP TO A CONCLUSION.
condition
See: IN SHAPE or IN CONDITION, IN THE PINK or IN THE PINK OF CONDITION, ON CONDITION THAT, OUT OF SHAPE or OUT OF CONDITION.
conference
See: PRESS CONFERENCE.
congregate housing
{n.}, {informal} A form of housing for elderly persons in which dining facilities and services are shared in multiple dwelling units. * /Jerry put Grandma in a place where ...
conk out
{v. phr.}, {slang}, {informal} To fall asleep suddenly with great fatigue or after having drunk too much. * /We conked out right after the guests had left./
consent
See: SILENCE GIVES CONSENT.
consequence
See: IN CONSEQUENCE, IN CONSEQUENCE OF.
consideration
See: IN CONSIDERATION OF.
consumer goods
or[consumer items] {n.} Food and manufactured things that people buy for their own use. * /In time of war, the supply of consumer goods is greatly reduced./
content
See: TO ONE'S HEART'S CONTENT.
contention
See: BONE OF CONTENTION.
contrary
See: ON THE CONTRARY, TO THE CONTRARY.
control room
{n.} A room containing the panels and switches used to control something (like a TV broadcast). * /While a television program is on the air, engineers are at their places ...
control tower
{n.} A tower with large windows and a good view of an airport so that the traffic of airplanes can be seen and controlled, usually by radio. * /We could see the ...
conversation
See: MAKE CONVERSATION.
conversation piece
{n.} Something that interests people and makes them talk about it; something that looks unusual, comical, or strange. * /Uncle Fred has a glass monkey on top of his piano that ...
conviction
See: HAVE THE COURAGE OF ONE'S CONVICTIONS.
cook
See: SHORT-ORDER COOK, WHAT'S UP or WHAT'S COOKING.
cook one's goose
{v. phr.}, {slang} To ruin someone hopelessly; destroy one's future expectations or good name. * /The bank treasurer cooked his own goose when he stole the bank's funds./ * ...
cook up
{v.}, {informal} To plan and put together; make up; invent. * /The boys cooked up an excuse to explain their absence from school./
cool
See: PLOW ONE'S COOL.
cool as a cucumber
{adj. phr.}, {informal} Very calm and brave; not nervous, worried, or anxious; not excited; composed. * /Bill is a good football quarterback, always cool as a cucumber./
cool customer
{n.} Someone who is calm and in total control of himself; someone showing little emotion. * /Jim never gets too excited about anything; he is a cool customer./
cool down
or[cool off] {v.} To lose or cause to lose the heat of any deep feeling (as love, enthusiasm, or anger); make or become calm, cooled or indifferent; lose interest. * /A heated ...
cool one's heels
{v. phr.}, {slang} To be kept waiting by another's pride or rudeness; be forced to wait by someone in power or authority; wait. * /He cooled his heels for an hour in ...
coon's age
See: DOG'S AGE.
coop
See: FLY THE COOP.
coop up
{v. phr.} To hedge in; confine; enclose in a small place. * /How can poor Jane work in that small office, cooped up all day long?/
cop a feel
{v. phr.}, {vulgar}, {avoidable} To attempt to arouse sexually by manual contact, usually by surprise. * /John talks big for a 16 year old, but all he's ever done is cop a feel ...
cop a plea
{v. phr.}, {slang}, {colloquial} To plead guilty during a trial in the hope of getting a lighter sentence as a result. * /The murderer of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., ...
cop out
{v. phr.}, {slang}, {informal} To avoid committing oneself in a situation where doing so would result in difficulties. * /Nixon copped out on the American people with ...
cop-out
{n. phr.}, {slang}, {informal} An irresponsible excuse made to avoid something one has to do, a flimsy pretext. * /Cowe on, Jim, that's a cheap cop-out, and I don't believe ...
copy cat
n. Someone who copies another person's work or manner. - Usually used by children or when speaking to children. * /He called me a copy cat just because my new shoes look like ...
corn ball
{n.}, {slang}, {informal} 1. A superficially sentimental movie or musical in which the word " love" is mentioned too often; a theatrical performance that is trivially ...
corn belt
{n.} 1. The Midwest; the agricultural section of the United States where much corn is grown. * /Kansas is one of the slates that lies within the corn belt./
corner
See: AROUND THE CORNER, CUT CORNERS, FOUR CORNERS, OUT OF THE CORNER OF ONE'S EYE.
cost a bomb
or[an arm and a leg] {v. phr.} To be extremely expensive. * /My new house has cost us an arm and a leg and we're almost broke./
cotton
See: ON TOP OF THE WORLD also SITTING ON HIGH COTTON.
cotton picking
,[cotton-pickin'] {adj.}, {slang}, {colloquial} Worthless, crude, common, messy. * /Keep your cotton picking hands off my flowers!/ * /You've got to clean up your room, ...
couch case
{n.}, {slang}, {informal} A person judged emotionally so disturbed that people think he ought to see a psychiatrist (who, habitually, make their patients lie down on a ...
couch doctor
{n.}, {slang}, {colloquial} A psychoanalyst who puts his patients on a couch following the practice established by Sigmund Freud. * /I didn't know your husband was a couch ...
couch potato
{n.} A person who is addicted to watching television all day. * /Poor Ted has become such a couch potato that we can't persuade him to do anything./
cough up
{v.}, {slang} 1. To give (money) unwillingly; pay with an effort. * /Her husband coughed up the money for the party with a good deal of grumbling./ 2. To tell what was ...
couldn't care less
{v. phr.}, {informal} To be indifferent; not care at all. * /The students couldn't care less about the band; they talk all through the concert./ Also heard increasingly as ...
counsel
See: KEEP ONE'S OWN COUNSEL.
count
See: STAND UP AND BE COUNTED.
count heads
or[count noses] {v. phr.}, {informal} To count the number of people in a group. * /On the class picnic, we counted heads before we left and when we arrived to be sure that ...
count off
{v.} 1. To count aloud from one end of a line of men to the other, each man counting in turn. * /The soldiers counted off from right to left./ 2. To place into a separate ...
count on
{v.} 1. To depend on; rely on; trust. * /The team was counting on Joe to win the race./ * /I'll do it; you know you can count on me./ * /The company was counting on ...
count one's chickens before they're hatched
{v. phr.}, {informal} To depend on getting a profit or gain before you have it; make plans that suppose something will happen; be too sure that something will happen. ...
count out
{v.} 1. To leave (someone) out of a plan; not expect (someone) to share in an activity; exclude. * /"Will this party cost anything? If it does, count me out, because I'm ...
count to ten
{v. phr.}, {informal} To count from one to ten so you will have time to calm down or get control of yourself; put off action when angry or excited so as not to do ...
countdown
{n.}. {Space English}, {informal} 1. A step-by-step process which leads to the launching of a rocket. * /Countdown starts at 23:00 hours tomorrow night and continues for 24 ...
counter
See: UNDER THE COUNTER.
county mounty
{n.}, {slang}, {citizen's hand radio jargon} Sheriff's deputy. * /The county mounties are parked under the bridge./
courage
See: HAVE THE COURAGE OF ONE'S CONVICTIONS, SCREW UP ONE'S COURAGE.
course
See: IN DUE COURSE, MATTER OF COURSE, OF COURSE, PAR FOR THE COURSE.
court
See: DAY IN COURT, FRONT COURT, HOLD COURT, KANGAROO COURT.
cousin
See: FIRST COUSIN, SECOND COUSIN.
cover
See: FROM COVER TO COVER at FROM --- TO(3), UNDER COVER.
cover a lot of ground
{v. phr.} To process a great deal of information and various facts. * /Professor Brown's thorough lecture on asteroids covered a lot of ground today./
cover girl
{n.} A pretty girl or woman whose picture is put on the cover of a magazine. * /Ann is not a cover girl, but she is pretty enough to be./
cover ground
or[cover the ground] {v. phr.} 1. To go a distance; travel. * /Mr. Rogers likes to travel in planes, because they cover ground so quickly./ 2. {informal} To move over an ...
cover one's tracks
or[cover up one's tracks] {v. phr.} 1. To hide and not leave anything, especially foot marks, to show where you have been, so that no one can follow you. * /The deer ...
cover the waterfront
{v. phr.} To talk or write all about something; talk about something all possible ways. * /The principal pretty well covered the waterfront on student behavior./
cover up
{v.}, {informal} 1. To hide something wrong or bad from attention. * /The spy covered up his picture-taking by pretending to be just a tourist./ * /A crooked banker tried to ...
cover-up
{n.}, {slang} A plan or excuse to escape blame or punishment; lie, alibi. * /When the men robbed the bank, their cover-up was to dress like policemen./ * /Joe's ...
covered-dish supper
or[potluck supper] A meal to which each guest brings a share of the food. * /Dolly made a chicken casserole for the covered-dish supper./
cow
See: HOLY CATS or HOLY COW, SACRED COW.
cow college
{n.}, {slang} 1. An agricultural college; a school where farming is studied. * /A new, bigger kind of apple is being grown at the cow college./ 2. A new or rural ...
cowboy
{n.}, {slang}, {informal} A person who drives his car carelessly and at too great a speed in order to show off his courage. * /Joe's going to be arrested some day - ...
cows tail
{n.}, {dialect} A person who is behind others. * /John was the cow's tail at the exam./ * /Fred was always the old cow's tail for football practice./
cozy up
{v.}, {slang} To try to be close or friendly; try to be liked. - Usually used with "to". * /John is cozying up to Henry so he can join the club./
crack
See: HARD NUT TO CRACK or TOUGH NUT TO CRACK.
crack the whip
{v. phr.}, {informal} To get obedience or cooperation by threats of punishment. * /If the children won't behave when I reason with them, I have to crack the whip./
crack a book
{v. phr.}, {slang} To open a book in order to study. - Usually used with a negative. * /John did not crack a book until the night before the exam./ * /Many students think ...
crack a bottle
{v. phr.} To open a new bottle of alcoholic beverage. * /On birthdays it is customary to crack a bottle and offer one's best wishes./
crack a joke
{v. phr.}, {informal} To make a joke; tell a joke. * /The men sat around the stove, smoking and cracking jokes./
crack a smile
{v. phr.}, {informal} To let a smile show on one's face; permit a smile to appear. * /Bob told the whole silly story without even cracking a smile./ * /Scrooge was a ...
crack down
{v. phr.}, {informal} To enforce laws or rules strictly; require full obedience to a rule. * /After a speeding driver hit a child, the police cracked down./ - Often ...
crack of dawn
{n. phr.} The time in the morning when the sun's rays first appear. * /The rooster crows at the crack of dawn and wakes up everybody on the farm./
crack up
{v.} 1. To wreck or be wrecked; smash up. * /The airplane cracked up in landing./ * /He cracked up his car./ 2. {informal} To become mentally ill under physical ...
cracked up
{adj. phr.}, {informal} Favorably described or presented; praised. - Usually used in the expression "not what it's cracked up to be". * /The independent writer's ...
cracking
See: GET CRACKING - at GET GOING(2).
crackpot
{n.}, {attrib. adj.}, {informal} 1. {n.} An eccentric person with ideas that don't make sense to most other people. * /Don't believe what Uncle Noam tells you - he is a ...
cradle
See: ROB THE CRADLE.
cradle robber
,[cradle robbing] See: ROB THE CRADLE.
cramp
See: WRITER'S CRAMP.
cramp one's style
{v. phr.}, {informal} To limit your natural freedom; prevent your usual behavior; limit your actions or talk. * /He cramped his style a good deal when he lost his ...
crash dive
{n.} A sudden dive made by a submarine to escape an enemy; a dive made to get deep under water as quickly as possible. * /The captain of the submarine told his crew to ...
crash the gate
{v. phr.}, {slang} To enter without a ticket or without paying; attend without an invitation or permission. * /Bob got into the circus without paying. He crashed the gate./ ...
crash-dive
{v.} 1. To dive deep underwater in a submarine as quickly as possible. * /We shall crash-dive if we see enemy planes coming./ 2. To dive into (something) in an ...
craw
See: STICK IN ONE'S CRAW.
crawl up
See: RIDE UP.
crazy
or[mad] or[nuts about] {adj. phr.}, {informal} Excessively fond of; infatuated with. * /Jack is totally nuts about Liz, but she is not too crazy about him./
cream
See: VANISHING CREAM.
cream of the crop
{n. phr.} The best of a group; the top choice. * /May Queen candidates were lovely, but Betsy and Nancy were the cream of the crop./ * /The students had drawn many good ...
creature of habit
{n. phr.} A person who does things out of habit rather than by thought. * /Our boss is a creature of habit, so let us not confuse him with too many new ideas./
credibility gap
{n.}, {hackneyed phrase}, {politics} An apparent discrepancy between what the government says and what one can observe for oneself. * /There was a tremendous credibility gap ...
credit
See: DO CREDIT.
creek
See: UP THE CREEK or UP THE CREEK WITHOUT A PADDLE.
creep
See: THE CREEPS.
creep up on
{v.} 1. To crawl towards; move along near the ground; steal cautiously towards so as not to be seen or noticed. * /The mouse did not see the snake creeping up on it over the ...
crew
See: SECTION GANG or SECTION CREW.
crew cut
or[crew haircut] {n.} A boy's or man's hair style, cut so that the hair stands up in short, stiff bristle. * /Many boys like to get crew cuts during the summer to keep ...
crisp
See: BURN TO A CRISP.
crocodile tears
{n.} Pretended grief; a show of sorrow that is not really felt. * /When his rich uncle died, leaving him his money, John shed crocodile tears./ (From the old legend that ...
crook
See: BY HOOK OR BY CROOK.
crop
See: CASH CROP, CREAM OF THE CROP, STICK IN ONE'S CRAW or STICK IN ONE'S CROP.
crop up
{v.} To come without warning; appear or happen unexpectedly. * /Problems cropped up almost every day when Mr. Reed was building his TV station./ * /Serious trouble ...
crop out
{v.} To appear at the surface; come through or show through from hiding or concealment. * /Rocks often crop out in New England pasture land./ * /A hidden hate cropped ...
cropper
See: COME A CROPPER.
cross
See: AT CROSS PURPOSES, CARRY ONE'S CROSS, DOUBLE CROSS, KEEP ONE'S FINGERS CROSSED at CROSS ONE'S FINGERS(1b).
cross a bridge before one comes to it
{v. phr.} To worry about future events or trouble before they happen. - Usually used in negative sentences, often as a proverb. * /"Can I be a soldier when I grow up, ...
cross fire
{n.} 1. Firing in a fight or battle from two or more places at once so that the lines of fire cross. * /The soldiers on the bridge were caught in the crossfire coming ...
cross one's fingers
{v. phr.} 1a. To cross two fingers of one hand for good luck. * /Mary crossed her fingers during the race so that Tom would win./ 11b. or[keep one's fingers crossed] ...
cross one's heart
or[cross one's heart and hope to die] {v. phr.}, {informal} To say that what you have said is surely true; promise seriously that it is true. - Often used by ...
cross one's mind
or[pass through one's mind] {v. phr.} To be a sudden or passing thought; be thought of by someone; come to your mind; occur to you. * /At first Bob was puzzled by ...
cross one's path
{v. phr.} To meet or encounter someone; to come upon someone more by accident than by plan. * /Surprisingly, I crossed John's path in Central Park one afternoon./
cross street
{n.} A street that crosses a main street and runs on both sides of it. * /Elm Street is a cross street on Main Street and there is a traffic light there./ Compare: ...
cross swords
{v. phr.}, {literary} To have an argument with; fight. - Often used with "with". * /Don't argue with the teacher; you're not old enough to cross swords with her./
cross the wire
{v. phr.} To finish a race. * /The Russian crossed the wire just behind the American./
cross up
{v.}, {informal} 1. To block or upset; throw into confusion or disorder. * /We were going to catch him at the gate, but he crossed us up by going in the back way./ * ...
cross-check(1)
{v.} To test the truth of by examining in different ways or by seeing different reports about. * /If you see something in a book that may not be true, be sure to ...
cross-check(2)
{n.} The testing of the truth of by checking one report against another or others. * /A cross-check with other books will show us if this story is true./
crow
See: EAT CROW.
crow before one is out of the woods
{v. phr.} To be glad or brag before you are safe from danger or trouble. - Usually used in negative sentences, often as a proverb, "Don't crow before you are out of the ...
crow to pick
See: BONE TO PICK or CROW TO PICK.
crown jewels
{n. pl.} The crown, staff, and jewels used for the crowning of a king or queen; the crown and jewels representing royal power and authority. * /The crown jewels are handed ...
crust
See: UPPER CRUST.
crux of the matter
{n. phr.} The basic issue at hand; the core essence that one must face. * /The crux of the matter is that he is incompetent and we will have to fire him./
cry
See: FAR CRY, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, HUE AND CRY.
cry before one is hurt
or[holler before one is hurt] {v. phr.}, {informal} To complain when there is no reason for it; become upset because you are worried or afraid. - Used in negative ...
cry buckets
{v. phr.} To shed an excessive amount of tears. * /Grandma is crying buckets over the loss of our cat./
cry for
or[cry out for] {v.}, {informal} To need badly; be lacking in. * /It has not rained for two weeks and the garden is crying for it./ * /The school is crying out for ...
cry out
{v.} 1. To call out loudly; shout; scream. * /The woman in the water cried out "Help!"/ 2. To complain loudly; protest strongly. - Used with "against". * /Many people ...
cry out for
See: CRY FOR.
cry over spilled milk
or[cry over spilt milk] {v. phr.}, {informal} To cry or complain about something that has already happened; be unhappy about something that cannot be helped. * ...
cry uncle
See: SAY UNCLE.
cry wolf
{v. phr.} To give a false alarm; warn of a danger that you know is not there. * /The general said that the candidate was just crying wolf when he said that the army was too ...
crystal ball
{n.} A ball, usually made of quartz crystal (glass) that is used by fortune-tellers. * /The fortune-teller at the fair looked into her crystal ball and told me that I would ...
crystal gazing
{n.} The attempt to predict future events. * /The magician's specialty was crystal gazing./
cub scout
{n.} A member of the Cub Scouts, the junior branch of the Boy Scouts for boys 8-10 years of age. * /Jimmie is only seven, too young to be a Cub Scout./
cucumber
See: COOL AS A CUCUMBER.
cudgel
See: TAKE UP THE CUDGELS FOR.
cudgel one's brains
See: BEAT ONE'S BRAINS OUT.
cue in
{v. phr.}, {informal} To add new information to that which is already known. * /Let's not forget to cue in Joe on what has been happening./
cuff
See: OFF-THE-CUFF, ON THE CUFF.
culture vulture
{n.}, {slang}, {informal} A person who is an avid cultural sightseer, one who seeks out cultural opportunities ostentatiously, such as going to the opera or seeing ...
cup
See: IN ONE'S CUPS.
cup of tea
also[dish of tea] {n. phr.}, {informal} 1. Something you enjoy or do well at; a special interest, or favorite occupation. Used with a possessive. * /You could always get him to ...
curb service
{n.} Waiting on customers while they sit in their cars. * /Families with small children often look for hamburger stands that offer curb service./
curiosity killed the cat
{informal} Getting too nosy may lead a person into trouble. - A proverb. * /"Curiosity killed the cat," Fred's father said, when he found Fred hunting around in closets ...
curl
See: PIN CURL.
curl one's hair
{v. phr.}, {slang} To shock; frighten; horrify; amaze. * /Wait till you read what it says about you - this'll curl your hair./ * /The movie about monsters from another ...
curl up
{v.} 1a. To become curly or wavy. * /Bacon curls up when it is cooked./ 1b. To roll oneself into a ball. * /Tim curled up in bed and was asleep in five minutes./ 2. See: ...
current
See: SWIM AGAINST THE CURRENT.
curry favor
{v.} To flatter or serve someone to get his help or friendship. * /Joe tried to curry favor with the new teacher by doing little services that she didn't really want./ * ...
curve
See: THROW A CURVE.
cut
See: FISH OR CUT BAIT.
cut a class
{v. phr.} To be truant; to deliberately miss a class and do something else instead. * /"If you keep cutting classes the way you do, you will almost surely flunk this ...
cut a figure
{v. phr.} To make a favorable impression; carry off an activity with dignity and grace. * /With his handsome face and sporty figure, Harry cuts quite a figure with all ...
cut a swathe
{v. phr.} 1a. To mow a path through a field. * /The farmer cut a swathe through the high grass with his scythe./ 1b. To cut down as if by mowing. * /The machine gun ...
cut across
{v.} 1. To cross or go through instead of going around; go a short way. * /John didn't want to walk to the corner and turn, so he cut across the yard to the next ...
cut and run
{v.}, {informal} To abandon an unfavorable situation. * /When the price of coffee dropped sharply many investors wanted to cut and run./
cut back
{v.} 1. To change direction suddenly while going at full speed. * /The halfback started to his left, cut back to his right, and ran for a touchdown./ 2. To use fewer or use ...
cut both ways
or[cut two ways] {v. phr.} To have two effects; cause injury to both sides. * /People who gossip find it cuts both ways./
cut corners
{v. phr.} 1. To take a short way; not go to each corner. * /He cut corners going home in a hurry./ 2. To save cost or effort; manage in a thrifty way; be saving. * ...
cut down
{v.} To lessen; reduce; limit. * /Tom had to cut down expenses./ * /The doctor told Mr. Jones to cut down on smoking./
cut down to size
{v. phr.}, {informal} To prove that someone is not as good as he thinks. * /The big boy told John he could beat him, but John was a good boxer and soon cut him down to ...
cut ice
{v. phr.}, {informal} To make a difference; make an impression; be accepted as important. - Usually used in negative, interrogative, or conditional sentences. * /When ...
cut in
{v.} 1. To force your way into a place between others in a line of cars, people, etc.; push in. * /After passing several cars, Fred cut in too soon and nearly caused an ...
cut into
{v.} 1. To make less; reduce. * /The union made the company pay higher wages, which cut into the profits./ * /The other houses got old and shabby, and that cut into ...
cut loose
{v.} 1. To free from ties or connections, cut the fastenings of. * /The thief hastily cut the boat loose from its anchor./ Compare: LET LOOSE(1a). 2. ...
cut no ice
{v. phr.} To have no effect; achieve no result; be insignificant. * /The fact that the accused is a millionaire will cut no ice with this particular judge./
cut off
{v.} 1. To separate or block. * /The flood cut the townspeople off from the rest of the world./ * /The woods cut off the view./ * /His rudeness cuts him off from ...
cut off one's nose to spite one's face
{v. phr.} To suffer from an action intended originally to harm another person. * /In walking out and leaving his employer in the lurch, John really cut off his nose to ...
cut offs
{n.}, {colloquial} Pants cut to the length of shorts and usually left unhemmed so as to look old and worn, e.g., considered cool and elegant. * /Jack always wears ...
cut one's eyeteeth on
See: CUT TEETH(2).
cut one's losses
{v. phr.} To stop spending time, money, or energy on unprofitable projects and concentrate on what goes well. * /"Just cut your losses, Jim," his father suggested, "and ...
cut one's teeth on
See: CUT TEETH(2).

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