Friday, July 15, 2011

Bed of Roses, Choosers & Better Half - Idioms in English

Bed of Roses

“Life is not always a bed of roses.

Meaning: a wonderful, pleasant situation or position; an easy, comfortable life.
Origin: English poets have used this phrase for centuries. Roses are such lovely, sweet-smelling, soft-petaled flowers that a bed of them suggests a lively, sweet, and soft condition. The meaning was stretched to mean any easy and comfortable situation in life. Beggars can’t be


“Beggars can’t be choosers. If you don’t have money to go out forpizza, you’ll have to eat in the cafeteria.”

Meaning: needy people have to take whatever they can get and cannot be concerned about the quality if they cannot afford to buy it for themselves.
Origin: This proverb has been around since the mid-1500s. It means that people who need something but who have little or no control over their situations can’t choose what they get. They have to accept what is offered.

Better Half

I’m not making a decision until I check with my better half.

Meaning: either partner in marriage.
Origin: Puritans were English Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries who favoured strict religious discipline. They said that each person was made up of two halves, body and soul, and that the soul was the better half because it was the spiritual side. Sir Philip Sidney, an English writer, said that a marriage was made up of two halves, and that the better half was the better spouse. Today when the phrase “better half” is used, it almost always means someone’s wife, although there’s no reason why a wife can’t use the term to describe her husband. In either case, “better half” is a compliment.

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