Birds, Reptiles and Creepy Crawlies in English Proverbs and Sayings
Learn How to Include Birds, Reptiles and Creepy Crawlies in Your Conversation!
English language is very rich in similes, metaphors, proverbs and sayings.
Here you will find many figures of speech about birds, reptiles and creepy crawly things like spiders, flies and even dragons.
I think you'll be quite surprised to find how many expressions there are about these creatures.
See How Many of These English Expressions You Know
If you are English speaking, you will find this fun, and if you are learning English as a second language, you will discover many useful phrases which will help you to improve your English in an enjoyable way, and the pictures will assist you in remembering.
Proverbs and Sayings About Birds:
Don't count your chickens till they hatch - Don't rely on things which haven't happened yet
A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush - better to have something than nothing at all
One swallow doesn't make a summer - you can't make a generalisation from just one event
Bird brained - forgetful
A birdie - a golfing term for a hole in one
A wise old owl - somebody clever or street-wise
As the crow flies - straight
To crow - to boast triumphantly
hawk-eyed - noticing everything
To hawk your wares - to sell
As hard as putting salt on a sparrow's tail - almost impossible
Sing like a bird - to sing beautifully
Sing like a canary - to disclose secrets under pressure
To parrot something - to copy
A polly parrot -Someone who keeps repeating what you say
Pigeon-toed - feet that turn in
A vulture - someone who preys on other people
Chicken livered - cowardly
A little dicky bird told me -I am not saying who told me
Not a dicky - Not a word (comes from Cockney rhyming slang - dicky bird = word)
A Kiwi - A New Zealander
An ostrich - Someone who is hiding their head in the sand and, therefore, refuses to accept what is evident
A gannet - A greedy person
Proverbs and Sayings About Reptiles:
To Snake - To wind (e.g. a path winding through a field)
Like a Chamelion - Someone who blends in or changes their appearance to fit the circumstances
Crocodile tears - pretending to be unhappy when you are really glad
A snake in the grass - Someone who is likely to harm you if you aren't careful
You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a prince - It's difficult to find someone suitable
Leap frog - to go up one level
A frog in your throat - a slight cough
Toad-in-the-hole - sausages in batter
To toady - to act obsequiously
A Dragon - someone fiery and bad-tempered
Draconian - harsh
The Oxford Dictionaries Are Some of the Best, and Have Been in Print for Many Decades, With Updates to Incorporate Modern Language Changes
Oxford dictionaries are exellent value, and are very good because Oxford Press specializes in dictionaries.
In case you don't know, the whole point of using a thesaurus is to discover words with a similar meaning which you can use in place of the word you usually use. This gives your use of language more color and variety, and, of course, it increases your vocabulary.
I have been using various Oxford Dictionaries for years, and have always found them very helpful, not only when searching for words, synonyms and their meanings, but also to learn new vocabulary. When I was younger, I used to scan through a few pages just for enjoyment, to find new words and to understand their source. Many English words come from other European languages, from Nordic to Mediterranean countries, and even from further afield around the world.
I Wrote This Poem About a Crocodile
The crocodile is a gruesome creature
Green slime drips from every feature
His tongue is pink, his breath is vile
I do not trust his toothy smile
The crocodile is a fearsome creature
If you go near he may well eat yer
He lurks on the bank of the great Zambezi
Escape from him would not be easy
© Diana Grant
Creepy Crawlies (Insects)
Proverbs and Sayings about Creepy Crawlies
To Give Someone a Flea in the Ear - To give them a sharp reprimand
Like Bees Round a Honeypot - To be strongly attracted
Waspish - Sharply irritable, spiteful
To be fly - To be streetwise or clever
A Fly in the Ointment - A minor irritation which spoils something
A Fly-By-Night - Unreliable or untrustworthy
A Spider's Web - A lair
To Create a Spider's Web of Lies - To create a tissue of lies
Ants in your Pants - You can't sit still
At a Snail's Pace - Very slowly
To Feel Sluggish - Jaded or lacking energy
A Leech - a person who lives off or makes a profit from someone
The Worm Turns - If you push a quiet person too far they will turn on you
A Fly on the Wall - An unnoticed observer
What Are Your Thoughts About Learning English?
Are You a Native English Speaker, or Are You Learning English as a Second Language?
Compare your opinion with other people who have had to learn - Is English too difficult? Are there too many exceptions or too many rules?
And what about the spelling? But take heart, virtually nobody gets the spelling right every time! In fact, my grandchildren have the same experience as I did as a child in primary school - taking home a list of ten new spellings every day or two for several years to learn, with a class test the next day. It just doesn't come naturally, because the English language is derived from so many different sources. I have found that It certainly helps to spell correctly in English if you have also learnt Latin, Greek, French and German!
Do you like the English Language?
My Bird Design -- an Owl
Links to More About Language
- The English Tongue Twister
Tongue twisters are good fun, and help with your pronunciation, whether your home language is English, or whether you are learning English as a second language
- English Proverbs and Sayings About Boundaries, Walls and Fences
You'd be surprised how many expressions there are about the delicate subject of boundaries, walls and fences - obviously this is something very dear to the Englishman's heart. Boundary disputes are quite common in English law
A Popular YouTube Video About English Idioms - "All..."
What do You Think?
It's such fun to hear from people all round the world - it never ceases to please and amaze me, sitting at my computer in London, and getting messages from every continent in the World .
So Please tell us all what you think: about English, about birds, reptiles and other creatures, or even about world events - just leave your mark.
© 2012 Diana Grant