In this episode, The Teacher introduces you to three idiomatic phrases connected with horses.
1. To eat like a horse
2. Straight from the horse’s mouth
3. To flog a dead horse
Hello, I’m a very interesting and intelligent man.
And this is Fred, who, as you may have noticed, is a horse. Today Fred and I are going to be helping you to improve your English.
I bet you’ve never been taught by a horse before.
Hungry, isn’t he? In fact, he eats all the time. He eats like a horse – of course he does – he is a horse.
In English, if someone eats a lot we can say ‘he eats like a horse’.
To eat like a horse. To eat a lot.
[Neighing and other horsy noises.]
What’s that you say Fred? Ah, just that silly noise horses make.
Anyway, I heard it straight from the horse’s mouth.
We use this idiom when we’ve got some information directly from the person responsible for it. For example: my boss is going to fire me. Yes, it’s true. I heard it straight from the horse’s mouth.
It means my boss told me directly. I didn’t hear it from anyone else.
Sad news, I’m afraid… Fred’s died.
Which means there’s no point in trying to get him work any more.
How do we make a horse work? Yes, that’s right, by hitting it, or as we say, ‘flogging it’.
Our next horse idiom: ‘to flog a dead horse’. Which as you can see is completely pointless.
‘To flog a dead horse’. This means to waste effort on something that we have no chance of succeeding at.
I sometimes feel like I’m flogging a dead horse when I’m teaching. My students, they never seem to learn… I don’t quite understand what the problem is…..very frustrating…
More BBC Idioms
- BBC Food idioms – Beans
- BBC sport idioms – Boxing
- BBC Transport idioms – Road
- BBC Transport idioms – Boats
- BBC Body idioms – Foot
- BBC Food idioms – Tea
- BBC Colour idioms – Green
- BBC Colour idioms – White
- BBC Body Idioms – Head
- BBC Animal idioms – Horse
More from the BBC
- L3: BBC Better Speaking
- L2: BBC 6 minute English with transcript videos
- L1: BBC English at Work with transcript videos
- L3: BBC The Reading Group
- L3: BBC Words in the News with transcript videos
- L1: BBC Face Up to Phrasals with transcript videos
- L1: BBC 6 Minute Vocabulary with transcript videos
- L1: BBC Short and Easy Dramas with transcript videos
- L1: BBC How to … with transcript videos
- L1: BBC English Idioms
- L2: Daily Dose of English
- L2: English Slang Dictionary
- L2: Idiom 100 – commonly used idioms
- L2: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Easy AudioBook
- L2: Reuters Short Videos
- L2: Shepherd Grammar
- L1: Listen to English – ESL British Podcasts
- L1: TwoMinute English
- L2: A.A. Milne – Winnie the Pooh AudioBook
- L2: The Secret Garden AudioBook
Source: BBC Learning EnglishMore Series for You: