Idioms title

The Idiom Attic - a collection of hundreds of English idioms, each one explained.

"failure" idioms...

See also, the Phrase Thesaurus list of phrases that contain the word failure

and, a list of phrases that relate in some way the word failure

" A sorry sight "
Meaning:
1. Something sadly neglected. 2. A person or thing of untidy appearance.
Example:
1. These Georgian townhouses were beautiful when they were built, but they make a sorry sight now they’ve been left unoccupied and vandalised. 2. Since Jim hit the bottle after Joan left him he’s not been taking care of himself. He looked a sorry sight today just dressed in old clothes and slippers.
Where did it originate?:
Shakespearian.
Where is it used?:
Widely used.
Hear the idiom spoken:
" Back to square one "
Meaning:
Back to the beginning.
Example:
He had nearly climbed the cliff before he slipped off. Now it's back to square one.
Where did it originate?:
Britain, early 20th century.
Where is it used?:
In the UK, but less so than a few years ago.
Hear the idiom spoken:
More idioms about:   number   sport  
" Go belly (or tits) up "
Meaning:
Become badly and permanently inoperative.
Example:
The company has gone belly up - they had millions in debts and their only customer went elsewhere.
Where did it originate?:
Britain, 20th century. The allusion is to fish floating dead in the water.
Where is it used?:
Hear the idiom spoken:
More idioms about:   the_human_body  
" Lose your touch "
Meaning:
Lose an ability that you used to possess.
Example:
Henry used to be sure to hit any number on the dartboard. Since his back operation he couldn't hit a barn door - he's really lost his touch.
Where did it originate?:
Britain, late 19th century.
Where is it used?:
Hear the idiom spoken:
" Sad ass "
Meaning:
A reference to an inept or undesirable person or thing.
Example:
Since the coal mines and steelworks have closed many places in the Rust Belt have become real sad-ass towns.
Where did it originate?:
USA, mid-20th century.
Where is it used?:
Mainly USA.
Hear the idiom spoken:
More idioms about:   slang   america  
" The author of your own misfortune "
Meaning:
Be to blame for one's own problems.
Example:
Tommy just took off across the moors with no gear and no phone. He ended up in hospital but no one is too sorry for him - he was the author of his own misfortune.
Where is it used?:
Worldwide, but rather old-fashioned.
Hear the idiom spoken:
More idioms about:   misfortune  
" The wheels have come off "
Meaning:
Said when a previously promising enterprise goes irretrievably wrong.
Example:
It was pretty easy to get a loan in 2007, but the wheels came off the world banking system when they found out they had loaned out far too much.
Hear the idiom spoken:
" Worse for wear "
Meaning:
Either 1. Shabby and worn out, or 2. Drunk.
Example:
1. This winter coat is a few years old now and is starting to look a bit worse for wear. 2. I know it's Jack's leaving do and he wants to stay until the end but, after all those tequia slammers, he's begining to look a little worse for wear.
Where did it originate?:
1. Britain, 16th century. 2. Britain 20th century.
Where is it used?:
Both forms used Worldwide, although 2 is more common in Britain than elsewhere.
Hear the idiom spoken:
More idioms about:   drink  

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