Saturday, July 3, 2004


Prerana Trehan

This week we take up some more idioms that deal with fire.

Have (a few/a lot etc) irons in the fire: have several jobs at the same time or have several possibilities of work.

I am not very concerned if I donít get this project because I have several irons in the fire, and I am sure something else will work out.

In the line of fire: be criticised, attacked or got rid of.

My teacher cannot stand tardiness and students who come late to school find themselves in her line of fire.

Jump out of the frying pan (and) into the fire: go from a bad situation to a worse one.

He thought that leaving home would solve his problems but ever since he has started living on his own he has realised that he has jumped from the frying pan into the fire.

Play with fire: do something that could be dangerous.

Girls who drive two-wheelers without helmets are playing with fire.

Thereís no smoke without fire: if people say someone has done something bad but no one knows whether it is true, it is probably true.

Even though all the cricketers deny reports of match fixing, I feel thereís no smoke without fire.

Keep the home fires burning: keep your home in good order while people who usually live with you are away, especially at war.

Soldiers at the battlefront send the major part of their salaries back home so that their wives can keep the home fires burning.

(Reference: Cambridge International Dictionary of Idioms)