Idiom:  until hell freezes over


Idiom:  until/till' hell freezes over

  • forever
  • something is never or not likely to happen


It's common to use either form: until hell freezes over or use 'till hell freezes over.

The idiom is frequently used with "before" and "when" to describe how something is not likely to happen.

Example sentences

Meaning 1: Forever

— Those two will hate each other until hell freezes over.

— I’m sure politicians will be liars 'till hell freezes over.

— We'll keep searching for the missing hikers until we find them or until hell freezes over.

— I'll protest and fight until hell freezes over before I hand over my guns.

— The mass murderer was convicted and sentenced to prison until hell freezes over.

Meaning 2:  Something is unlikely to happen

— Hell will freeze over before you get into Oxford University.

— For the thousandth time, no! I'll go on a date with you when hell freezes over.

— My father always said he'd stop smoking when hell froze over.

— I hate to say this but hell will freeze over before my daughter wins a beauty pageant. We still support her doing them though because she believes in herself.

— When my granddaughter told me she would clean her bedroom when hell freezes over, I was shocked into silence.

— You'll get an apology from Rebecca when hell freezes over. She's so stubborn and never admits being wrong.


Forever meaning:

  • forever and a day
  • never/not in a million years

Unlikely meaning:

  • an outside chance
  • in your dreams
  • fat chance
  • don't bank on it
  • when pigs fly

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