Here we’re going to learn 10 English idioms connected with Wall.
Talking to a Brick Wall… Have you ever wondered what it means?
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10 English Idioms connected with Wall
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I was doing an exercise with one of my students recently and asked her to research how many English idioms she could find that were in some way connected to parts of a building.
I was simply amazed at the number she located and very happy she understood the majority of those idioms very well indeed.
I thought that I would share some of them with you.
Walls feature a lot in these situations.
Intermediate to Advanced English Marathon
1️⃣ back to the wall
Meaning: when you can not solve a problem and you have no one to turn to for help, you can say “my back is to the wall”
My boss has told me this report must be finished by close of business on Friday. If not I can either work on the weekend or I can find another job. My back is really to the wall on this, what choice do I have!
2️⃣ have your back against the wall
Meaning: to be in a difficult position where you have to defend yourself
I really had my back against the wall that summer and had nowhere to go.
English Idioms connected with Wall
3️⃣ up the wall
Meaning: when you are going crazy and cannot think straight, or something or somebody is making you feel that way
He is driving me up the wall, he won’t shut up!!
4️⃣ come up against a brick wall
Meaning: when you are trying to solve a problem and every time you think you have a solution it does not work
I have come up against a brick wall. Nothing that I try to do works. What can I do?
Scroll down to find Chinese Walls meaning.
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5️⃣ hit the wall
Meaning: This expression is often used by athletes to describe the feeling when they get physically tired and feel they cannot continue.
I was running fine until I passed the 35km mark then I seemed to hit the wall and my legs turned to jelly.
6️⃣ talking to a brick wall
Meaning: talking to someone who either doesn’t listen or doesn’t comprehend what you are talking about
This reminds me of my school teachers.
Whenever students could not understand a simple explanation or found it difficult to understand the teacher, she would say, ‘I might as well be talking to a brick wall!’ – meaning I have a better chance of explaining this to a wall than to this class!
The bar staff that served us were so disinterested, I felt I was talking to a brick wall.
Talking to a Brick Wall Meaning
English Idioms connected with Wall - continued
7️⃣ Chinese walls
Meaning: A business expression used when two parts of the same business do not want the other part to know what they are doing.
In a large bank, there are many different departments. In a typical situation, neither of the departments (for example, credit or corporate finance) are aware that the other department is involved.
Chinese walls are an important part of investment banking best practices and compliance.
8️⃣ to be stonewalled
Meaning: to be deliberately ignored by someone
I asked him repeatedly for help he did not reply. He stonewalled me.
9️⃣ wall to wall
Meaning: describing something that fills the entire area
Frequently used when describing the interior design of an apartment or house.
The rooms were exquisitely decorated every room had wall to wall carpets and curtains.
This means the floors had fitted carpets throughout and curtains from the ceiling to the floor.
🔟 go to the wall
Meaning: to be in a hopeless situation, to be ruined
Many profitable businesses go to the wall during an economic downturn simply because they run out of cash.
Scroll down for Common Collocations with Wall
8 English Collocations with Wall
1️⃣ cover a wall with (pictures, posters, etc)
The walls of my son’s bedroom are covered with posters.
2️⃣ hang a (painting/picture) on the wall
We hung some pictures of Paris on the living room walls.
3️⃣ paint a wall
I’ve decided to paint the walls of my bedroom green.
4️⃣ a thick/thin wall
I can hear my neighbours through the thin walls.
5️⃣ an outside wall
The outside walls of my house are painted yellow.
6️⃣ drill a hole in the wall
Before you start, you’ll need to drill holes in the wall.
7️⃣ surrounded by a wall
The house is surrounded by a very high brick wall.
8️⃣ against the wall
I pushed the bookcase against the wall.
For more information on English phrasal verbs, English idioms and English grammar rules, check out the following links:
25 Common Collocations with Come
Plenty of material can be found on BBC Learning English and LearnEnglish British Council.
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