This English idioms lists includes expressions which have a main word that begins with the letters "X, Y or Z." If you want to learn idioms that start with other letters of the alphabet: click here to go to the main idioms page.
An idiom is a group of words whose meaning is different from the individual words if you looked them up separately in the dictionary. Here are the most common idioms beginning with these letters - and you'll immediately notice that there are very few idioms that have a main word beginning with "X." This is not surprising since there aren't many words that start with the letter "X."
x marks the spot: an “x” is used to show the exact location (spot) of something. Example: As you can see on the diagram, x marks the spot where the murder occurred... read more
year after year: every year for many years. Example: Year after year, my kids give me ugly ties as Christmas gifts... read more
year in, year out: every year for many years. Example: He worked at the company year in, year out for decades before he was laid off... read more
(all) year round: during the whole year, happening all year. Example: Most people only eat roast turkey and stuffing on Thanksgiving and Christmas but we keep it on the menu all year round at our restaurant... read more
in years: in a long time. Example: I hadn’t seen my high school English teacher in years but she looks exactly the same... read more
getting on in years: becoming old. Example: My mom is getting on in years so we’re building an extra room in our house for her.... read more
yell bloody murder: to scream really loudly. Example: When the thief tried to grab my bag, I yelled bloody murder and he let go and ran away... read more
yes man: someone who always agrees with authority (always says “yes”). Example: My boss is a total yes man so now we have an impossible sales target from upper management... read more
YOU, YOU’RE, YOURSELF
you can say that again: you strongly agree with something someone said. Example: "This pie is delicious." "You can say that again"... read more
you can’t take it with you: enjoy life today because you can’t take your money or possessions with you when you die. Example: Why don’t you ever drive your sports car? You can’t take it with you, ya know... read more
you can’t teach an old dog new tricks: the idea that older people can't learn new skills or learn how to do new things. Example: My grandfather has 5,000 followers on Twitter and Instagram—who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks!.. read more
you get what to pay for: the price of something usually equals its quality (especially cheap things are of low quality). Example: It’s true you get what you pay for—this $239 laptop is unbelievably slow... read more
you’re toast: you’re in trouble. Example: You’re toast when your mom finds out you ruined her blouse... read more
by yourself: all alone. Example: If you just want to be by yourself, why don’t you say so?.. read more
keep something to yourself: Keeping or having something only for you. Example: If that’s what you really believe, I suggest you keep your opinions to yourself... read more
yours truly: me, myself. Example: "Wow, who cooked all this good food?" "Yours truly"... read more
zero in on something: to focus or pay attention to one particular thing. Example: I think you should zero in on chapter two because it’s the most relevant for your situation... read more
zip one's lips: to be silent; to not tell a secret (as if the lips were zipped with a zipper so the person cannot talk). Example: I’m going to resign in two weeks but zip your lips please!.. read more
zone out: to not pay attention to things happening around you. Example: As soon as my boyfriend talks about sports, I automatically zone out...read more
zoom in on something: to examine or look at something more closely. Example: Zoom in on that part of the map; I think I recognize that area... read more
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You can also find many idiom definitions with the different online learner's dictionaries.
Main Idioms Page
"X, Y & Z" Idioms