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Part 286 – IDIOMS/PHRASES Previous Year Questions

Q1. The man changed colours when I questioned him on the allocation of funds.
(a) got numbed
(b) turned happy
(c) got motivated
(d) turned pale
Ans: (d) changed colours: to turn pale She changed colours when I asked her about her result. The best option is turned pale.

Q2. We cannot depend on him for this assignment as it needs careful handling and he is like a bull in a China shop.
(a) a clumsy person
(b) a tactful person
(c) a nonsense person
(d) a felicitous person
(a) like a bull in a China shop: a person who is careless, or who moves or acts in a rough or awkward way, in a place or situation where skill and care are needed. Her living room, with its delicate furniture, made him feel like a bull in a China shop. The best option is a clumsy person.

Q3. He made a few statements, but all were wide off the mark.
(a) irrelevant
(b) crucial
(c) important
(d) unreasonable
Ans: (a) wide off the mark: not accurate; inadequate; far from the target Sheena’s efforts were sincere but wide off the mark. The best option is irrelevant.

Q4. The prices are going up by leaps and bounds.
(a) gradually
(b) irregularly
(c) rapidly
(d) systematically
Ans: (c) by leaps and bounds: very rapidly; very quickly India is progressing by leaps and bounds. The best option is rapidly.

Q5. I did not give in to his request.
(a) approve (b) like
(c) permit (d) yield
(d) give in: to agree to do something that you do not want to do; yield The strikers seem determined, and are not likely to give in. The best option is yield.

Q6. In the last few years, India has advanced by leaps and bounds in Industrial sector.
(a) very pathetically
(b) very slowly
(c) very rapidly
(d) very competently
Ans: (c) by leaps and bounds: very quickly/rapidly India is progressing by leaps and bounds. The best option is very rapidly.

Q7. The whole problem has been swept under the carpet, but that is not the solution.
(a) kept hidden (b) ignored
(c) solved (d) detected
Ans: (a) swept under the carpet: to try to stop people from finding out about something wrong, illegal, embarrassing, etc. that has happened or that you have done You made a mistake that you can’t sweep under the carpet. The best option is kept hidden.

Q8. The strawberry dessert you made was out of this world.
(a) extraordinary (b) ordinary
(c) bitter (d) tasteless
(a) out of this world: emphasises how good/beautiful something is The cake is just out of this world. The best option is extraordinary.

Q9. I take my hat off to all those who donate blood regularly.
(a) congratulate (b) welcome
(c) admire (d) encourage
Ans: (c) take my hat off: to admire somebody very much for something he has done I take off my hat to youyou’ve done very well indeed. The best option is admire.

Q10. You must admire the way she sticks to her guns.
(a) maintains her opinion
(b) holds on to the pistol
(c) does not let her weapon go
(d) refuses to shoot
Ans: (a) sticks to her guns: held on to her decision I’ll stick to my guns in this matter. The best option is maintains her opinion.

Q11. You better learn to toe the line to avoid consequences.
(a) to be indifferent to rules
(b) to disobey rule
(c) to follow the lead
(d) to make your own rules
(c) to toe the line: to say or do what somebody in authority tells you to say/do, even if you do not share the same opinions, etc. Not everyone was happy with the plan, but most of us toed the line. The best option is to follow the lead.

Q12. He promised to look into the matter.
(a) to investigate
(b) to question
(c) to peer closely at
(d) to take care of
Ans: (a) look into: to examine something I’ll have to look into the matter. The best option is to investigate.

Q13. It is bad to try to fish in troubled waters.
(a) make a profit out of a disturbance
(b) go for fishing and cause trouble
(c) fish in hot weather
(d) catch fish in disturbed waters
Ans: (a) fish in troubled waters: to try to get a personal advantage from a disturbed/troubled situation Farhan is fishing in troubled waters by buying more shares of that company. The best option is make a profit out of a disturbance.

Q14. Thousands put on a daily fight to keep the wolf from the door.
(a) ward off mosquitoes
(b) keep oneself healthy
(c) avoid starvation
(d) guard from pickpockets
Ans: (c) keep the wolf from the door: to have enough money to avoid going hungry; to stop somebody feeling hungry I don’t make a lot of money. It is just enough to keep the wolf from the door. The best option is avoid starvation.

Q15. How did you break the ice in the party ?
(a) shatter peace
(b) cause harm
(c) break free
(d) initiate something
Ans: (d) break the ice: start a meeting with an introduction There should be someone who will break the ice at any social gathering. The best option is initiate something.

Q16. The policy has been declared to be null and void.
(a) valid (b) impossible
(c) invalid (d) empty
(c) null and void: not valid; having no legal force The court declared the law to be null and void. The best option is invalid.

Q17. He is known for blowing his own trumpet.
(a) clattering (b) shouting
(c) clamouring (d) boasting
Ans: (d) blowing his own trumpet: boasting Anyone will tell you she’s one of the best journalists we have got, although she never blows her own trumpet. The best option is boasting.

Q18. He cut the Gordian knot by practising what he preached.
(a) lessened the difficulty
(b) let the difficulty remain as it was
(c) removed the difficulty
(d) add to the difficulty
Ans: (c) cut the Gordian knot: to solve a problem by taking action He cut the Gordian knot by putting in lots of effort. The best option is removed the difficulty.

Q19. He took a leap in the dark with his latest investment in stocks.
(a) took a risk
(b) was hesitant
(c) was confused
(d) was cocksure
Ans: (a) took a leap in the dark: an action or risk that you take without knowing anything about the activity or what the result will be I had very little information about the company, so writing to them was a bit of a leap in the dark. The best option is took a risk.

Q20. Communicative English is the Achilles’ heel for the job aspirants.
(a) weak spot
(b) source of strength
(c) what they cherish most
(d) top priority
Ans: (a) achilles’ heel: a weak point His Achilles’ heel was that he could not drive. The best option is weak spot.

Q21. He is leaving the USA for good.
(a) urgently (b) permanently
(c) temporarily (d) immediately
(b) for good: permanently I’m moving to Europe for good. The best option is permanently.

Q22. What egged you on to become a social worker ?
(a) urged (b) dampened
(c) hindered (d) discouraged
Ans: (a) egged you on: to encourage somebody to do something, especially something that he should not do Calty wouldn’t have done the dangerous experiment if her brother hadn’t egged her on. The best option is urged

Q23. Many politicians in India are not fit to hold a candle to Mahatma Gandhi.
(a) superior (b) equal
(c) inferior (d) indifferent
Ans: (c) not fit to hold a candle: is not so good as somebody or something else Dolly is fast, but not fit to hold a candle to her. The best option is inferior

Q24. She must be paying through the nose for the face left.
(a) paying less than necessary
(b) paying too much
(c) paying the right amount
(d) paying reluctantly
Ans: (b) paying through the nose: to pay too much money for something We paid through the nose for that vacation. The best option is paying too much

Q25. He is putting the cart before the horse by purchasing furniture before buying a house.
(a) doing a thing in the wrong way
(b) doing a thing in the right way
(c) committing a great crime
(d) doing things meticulously
Ans: (a) putting the cart before the horse: to do things in the wrong order Building a school before knowing the age of the population is putting the cart before the horse. The best option is doing a thing in the wrong way.

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