English Quiz For SSC MAINS Exam: Idioms

 
Directions (1-10): An idiom and four possible meanings are given. Identify the meaning of the idiom from among the answer choices and mark its number as your answer.
Q1. To have an axe to grind
(a) to sharpen one’s wit
(b) to have some personal interest to serve
(c) to have some work to do
(d) to have something useful

Q2. To bear the brunt of
(a) to withstand pain and hunger
(b) to live life with fortitude
(c) to face the full fury of
(d) to challenge someone
Q3. To make a clean breast of
(a) to make a complete confession
(b) to keep oneself clean
(c) to avoid dangers
(d) to take an easy way out
Q4. To do yeoman’s service
(a) to work without much involvement
(b) to be engaged in agriculture
(c) to serve with selfish interest
(d) to work efficiently and skillfully.
Q5. To play second fiddle
(a) to be able to play several instruments
(b) to take a subordinate position
(c) to gain by flattery
(d) to behave in an exaggerated way to attract attention
Q6. To give vent to
(a) to behave in a fair and honest way
(b) to open a door or window
(c) to allow to escape
(d) to express openly
Q7. To fall flat
(a) to fall on your face
(b) to spread evenly
(c) to produce no effect
(d) to reduce the effect of
Q8. To leave no stone unturned
(a) to clean thoroughly
(b) to examine carefully
(c) to search for treasure
(d) to try every possible means
Q9. To throw cold water on
(a) to discourage
(b) to encourage
(c) to water the plants
(d) to clean the house
Q10. To keep the wolf from the door
(a) to take preventive measures
(b) to keep off visitors
(c) to kill wild animals
(d) to avoid dying of hunger

Directions (11-15): In each question, a sentence is given in which an idiom is used. The idiomatic phrase is underlined/bold. Four possible meanings of the idioms are also given. Mark the number of the correct meaning as your answer.
Q11. The young manager took the responsibility of settling the dispute of agitating workers as he was regarded as having the common touch.
(a) have the same interests as others
(b) support of various groups
(c) hold over workers
(d) the ability to talk to and understand ordinary people
Q12. This reshuffling of party positions is only a straw in the wind as there are definitely going to be major policy changes ahead.
(a) an incident that indicates how a future situation might develop
(b) a matter of negligible concern
(c) an action that instigates violence among employees
(d) a policy that contains no further implication
Q13. The articles of this journalist are acknowledged as one of the best as he takes his life in his hands to get information right from the scene of action.
(a) kill yourself; commit suicide
(b) make somebody’s life unpleasant of difficult
(c) have a comfortable and enjoyable life
(d) risk being killed, injured or attacked
Q14. The repeated requests of the teacher to maintain silence fell on deaf ears.
(a) was overheard
(b) was not tolerated
(c) was ruled out
(d) was ignored
Q15. Though the members of the team agree basically on most of the things, there are a few matters that they don’t see eye to eye.
(a) have the same opinion
(b) have clear vision
(c) think clearly
(d) argue vehemently

Solutions
S1. Ans.(b) 
Sol. To have an axe to grind-have a private reason for doing or being involved in something.

S2. Ans.(c) 
Sol. To bear the brunt of- to get the greater amount or larger part of something bad

S3. Ans.(a) 
Sol. To make a clean breast of-to tell the truth about something, especially something bad or illegal that you have done, so that you do not have to feel guilty any more

S4. Ans.(d) 
Sol. To do yeoman’s service-good, useful, or workmanlike service:

S5. Ans.(b) 
Sol. To play second fiddle-have a subordinate role to someone or something; be treated as less important than someone or something.

S6. Ans.(d) 
Sol. To give vent to- to express anger

S7. Ans.(c) 
Sol. To fall flat-fail completely to produce the intended or expected effect.

S8. Ans.(d) 
Sol. To leave no stone unturned-try every possible course of action in order to achieve something.

S9. Ans.(a) 
Sol. To throw cold water on-be discouraging or negative about.

S10. Ans.(d) 
Sol.  To keep the wolf from the door-have enough money to avert hunger or starvation (used hyperbolically).

S11. Ans.(d) 
Sol.  common touch- the ability to get on with or appeal to ordinary people.

S12. Ans.(a) 
Sol.  straw in the wind -something that shows you what might happen in the future

S13. Ans.(d) 
Sol.  takes his life in his hands -to risk someone’s life.

S14. Ans.(d) 
Sol.  fell on deaf ears. -[for talk or ideas] to be ignored by the persons they were intended for.

S15. Ans.(a) 
Sol.  see eye to eye-be in full agreement.

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