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List of Important Idioms / One Word Substitution in English for SSC, IBPS, SBI All Competitive Exams Preparation

Here is the list of Important Idioms / One Word Substitution in English. This list will help you in your preparation for SSC, IBPS, SBI & Other competitive exams. It has some of the important idioms listed which have been asked in previous exams.
In most of these competitive exams, few questions are asked on One Word Substitution from a list of options. One among that list, there is a word which have the meaning of that word or sentence and vice / versa. Candidate have to find that right word among those options. Only a candidate who have better vocabulary can give right answer to all those questions. A candidate a score these marks if He/She prepares well. Here we are providing a large collection of Idioms for one word substitution practice. For better preparation of competitive exams, candidates should check out these Idioms list given below.


List of Important Idioms / Collection of One Word Substitution in English


Important Advice -
Those Friends, who are a little weak in English, should read English Newspaper like The Hindu daily to have a better grip on English language and learn the idioms given in that (if any). This will held them in increasing their marks in this section. Also it will be helpful for your preparation of current affairs and GK. Also reading this list of Important Idioms will help you in your preparation of competitive exams.
The below given list have Various Idioms of English.
This list also includes Varous Idioms asked in Previous SSC Exams & Others.

List of Idioms / One word Substitution
A test in which cells from diseased organs are removed and tested - Biopsy
A person who writes decoratively - Calligrapher
Pertaining to cattle - Bovine
A back-stabber : A person is a back-stabber who unexpectedly betrays your trust.
To keeps one's temper : To be in good mood
To have an axe to grind : A private end to serve
A frog in your throat : A physical condition that makes your voice sound deeper.
Above my head : Too difficult for me to understand because of my lack intelligence.
Abreast-of-the-situation:Being aware of the latest information.
Against the stream : Opposite to the natural flow of things.
Beat the air :  To make useless efforts
Bee in one’s bonnet : To go on talking about something which other people think is not important
Be born with a silver spoon in one’s mouth : To be born in a rich family
Be in the driving seat : Bearing all responsibilities
To burn one’s fingers : To lose on account of foolish behavior
A cat and dog life :--To lead a life full of quarrels
A cold fish : A person devoid of emotions
To die hard :--Change with great difficulty
To eat humble pie :-To apologise in a humble manner
Once in a blue moon :-Very rarely
To plough a lonely furrow :---To work without help or support
A cock and bull story :-An improbable excuse
To kick one’s heels :-To wait with nothing to do
A hard nut to crack :A difficult problem
Smell a rat :Suspect something foul
Tooth and nail :-----With all one’s power
By leaps and bounds :-Rapidly
To pull one’s leg :------to joke; tease someone
To keep one’s fingers crossed :To hope fervently
Harp on the same string – Dwell on the same subject
Bury the hatchet – End the quarrel and make peace
Feather one’s own nest – Make money unfairly
Leave one in the lurch – Desert one in difficulties; leave one in a helpless condition
To eat humble pie – To apologize humbly; to yield under humiliating circumstances
To eat your words – To take back what you have said
One who is very careful and particular –meticulous
Live in relationship a man and a woman living without being married concubiange
One who is determined to exact full vegeance for wrong done to him vindictive
Commencement of words with the same letter –alliteration
A place where bees are kept; a collection of beehives - Apiary
A person living permanently in a certain place –domicile
To slap with a flat object –swat
One who pays too much attention to his cloths and appearance- dandy
One who pretends illness to escape duty –malingerer
To make both ends meet – To live within one’s income
Kill two birds with one stone – To achieve two results with one effort
To bring to light : to reveal
To be like a drowned rat : to be soaking wet
To compensate a person etc. For loss or damage –indemnify
A plan for or route to be followed on a journey itinerary
A short literary description marked by delicacy –vignette
A long journey especially by sea –voyage
A person who opposes another- antagonist
A person who is very selective disgusted easily and is hard to please –fastidious
Something that can not be harmed –inviolate
Fear of crowds –ochlo phobia
A funeral bell- knell
A person who is pure and clean – immaculate
Art of cutting tree and bushes into ornamental shape- topiary
Old age when a man behave like a fool –dotage
One who comes from a village and considered stupid –bumpkin
One who fights for money –mercenary
One who forsakes religion –renegade
One who is guilty of firing property –arsonist
One who talks continuously –loquacious
Person obsessed with one idea or subject- monomaniac
Person who does not believe in any religion –pagan
Person who holds scholarship at a university –bursar
Person who is against the ordinary society esp. Dressing –hippy
Stick to one’s guns – Remain faithful to the cause
A man of straw – A man of no substance
Leave no stone unturned – Use all available means
A home for old people- infirmary
A place for wild animals and birds –menagerie
A house or shelter for a dog –kennel
A place where pigs are kept –sty
A place where birds are kept – aviary
A case in which the blade of a sword is kept- sheath ,scabbard
A place where lather is tanned- tannery
One who drives a motor car –chauffeur
A person leaving his native country to settle in another- emigrant
A person having the same name –namesake
A person who is talkative –garrulous
To kill the goose that laid the golden egg : to lose a valuable source of income though greed
To cut a Gordian knot : solving a difficult problem
From hand to hand : from one person to another
Hard and fast rules : strict rules
To eat an humble pie : to submit oneself to humiliation and insult
Person who is always dissatisfied –malcontent
Person who lives alone and avoid others –recluse
An assembly of hearers –assemblage
One who is unrelenting and cannot be moved by entreaties inexorable
Regard for others as principle of a action-altruism
Person who claims to have great love for understanding of what is beautiful in nature , art etc –aesthete
A disease which spreads by contact –contagious
An animal story with moral –fable
Person who pilots or travels in a balloon airship or other aircraft- aeronaut
Witty , clever retort –repartee
A story in which ideas are symbolised as people- allegory
A common place remark –platitude
A sudden rush of wind –gust
Not conforming to ordinary rules of behaviour –eccentric
Short descriptive poem or picturesque scene or incident –idyll
A person who is reserved in talks- reticent
A short stay at a place –sojourn
A raised place on which offering to a god are made –altar
Government by the gods- theocracy
Government by old man – gerontocracy
A gathering a religious place - congregation
Government by the worst citizen- kakistocracy
Government run universally –panarcy
A funeral procession comprising a number of mourners cortege
Murder of one’s children –filicide
Murder of one’s brother –fratricide
A person with full discretionary power to act on behalf of a country- plenipotentiary
To derive a thing of its holy character –desecrate
A small piece of wood- chip
A pioneer of a reform movement –apostle
Wicked to a high degree –heinous
A place where animals are kept - Sanctuary
Something in which water-dwelling plants or animals / fishes are kept - Aquarium
Animal living in water - Aquatic
The original inhabitants of a country- aborigines
Dungeon entered by trapdoor –oubliette
Science of printing –typography
One who robs smuggler of his smuggled goods after the border has been crossed –hijacker
Use of more words than are needed to express the meaning –pleonasm
The science of judging of a person’s character capabilities etc. From an examination of the shape of his skull- phrenology
A political leader who tries to stir up people –demagogue
A light sailing boat built especially for racing yacht atonement for one’s sins –repentance
Be the embodiment or perfect example –personify
A person who maliciously destroys by fire –incendiary
The line which a plough cuts in the ground –furrow
A person who forsakes religion –renegade
A person concerned with practical results and values- pragmatist
Responsible according to law –legitimate
Decision made upon a political question by the votes of all qualified persons- plebiscite
Shining , brilliant and magnificent –resplendent
Cutting for stone in the bladder- lithotomy
A heavy unnatural slumber –stupor
Changing one’s mind too quickly –vacillation
To do away with rules- abrogate
A person sharing responsibility for a political party’s discipline and tactics –whip
Food which agrees with one’s taste –palatable
A story in verse –ballad
Plain or self evident truth- truism
A person who has just started learning –apprentice
Person who loves nature –aesthete
Person who pretends to have more knowledge- charlatan
Persuasive and fluent speech- eloquence
Physician who delivers babies –obsterician
Place where cows are sheltered –byre
Place which provides both board and lodging –inn
Power of reading thoughts of others –telepathy
Ridiculous use of works –malapropism
Ride on someone’s back –piggyback
Room leading into a large room –anteroom
Seat on elephant’s back –howdah
Song sung at burial –dirge
Thing that bring gentle and painless death from incurable disease –euthanasia
To explain a spiritual truth- benign
To do away with rule –abrogate
To explain a spiritual truth –parable
Using of new words –neology
A small enclosure for cattle ,sheep ,polutry etc- pen
Music played or sung at night below a person’s window –serenade
Strong and settled dislike between two persons –antipathy
A small house with all rooms on one floor –bunglow
An extremly deep crack or opening in the ground –chasm
Lottery in which an article is assigned by lot to one of those buying tickets –raffle /draw
One who always runs away from danger –timid
One who despises persons of lower social position –snob
Gradual recovery from illness –convalescence
One who is determined to exact full vegeance for wrong done to him –vindictive
Commencement of words with the same letter –alliteration
A person living permanently in a certain place –domicile
To slap with a flat object –swat
Fear of words –logophobia
Funny imitation of a poem –parody
Giving up throne by the king –abdication
Go back and forth –shuttle
Group of three novels –trilogy
Language difficult to understand –jargon
List of explantation –glossary
One who is more than a hundred years old –centenarian
One who is given to pleasure of the flesh –epicure
One who lives on others –parasite
Loud talk or speech –harangue
Man having the woman’s quality- effeminate
Man of lax moral- licentious
Man whose wife is unfaithful to him- cuckold
Something that cannot be taken away –inalienable
One who travels from place to place –tramp
To move along with quick short twisting actions- wriggle
Be the emodment or perfect example of –characterise
One who deserts his religion –apostate
Custom of having many wives –polygamy
Person who belives that god is everything and eveyting is god pantheist
A thing kept in memory of an event –souvenir
One who doesn't believe in God - Atheist
One who believe in God - Theist
Art of working with metals - metallurgy
A place where animals are slaughtered for the market –abattoir
The dwelling place if an animal underground- borrow
A place where treasurers ,stores ,ammunition are hidden –cache
A graveyard where dead are buried –creche
An original glass bottle for holding wine or other alcoholic drinks –decanter
A squirrel’s home –dray
One who works in return for being taught the trade- disciple
One whose attitude is to eat, drink and merry –epicurean
People in rowdy one who is against the religion –heretic
One who eats human flesh- cannibal
One who lives at the same time –contemporary
One who is a habitual drunker- sottoper
Idioms / One word substitution for SSC IBPS SBI RBI Exams
Relationship by blood or birth –consanguinity
Belief or opinion contrary to what is generally accepted- heresy
A country ruled by two country –condomunium
A lady’s purse –reticule
A religious song –hymn
A verse letter- epistle
A animal story with moral –fable
One who comes from a village and considered stupid –bumpkin
One who fights for money- mercenary
One who forsakes religion –renegade
One who is guilty of firing property –arsonist
One who loads and unloads ships –stevedore
One who retires from society to live a solitary life- recluse
One who pretends to be what he is not- hypocrite
A professional rider in horse races –jockey
A number of sheeps –flock
A collection of flags –bunting
A number of stars grounded together- constellation
The house of an arab –dowar
A factory for manufacturing of beers- brewery
A place for the collection of dried plants –herbarium
A case in which the sword is kept- sheath
Free from infection –immune
The dead body of a animal –caracass
The science of colours –chromatics
The science of the structure of human body- anatomy
The art of effective speaking –elocution
The study of rocks and soils –geology
The study of mountains –oralogy
The study of languages –philology
The study of the origin and history of words –etymology
The study of ancient writing- paleography
The art of preserving skin –taxidermy
The period between two reigns –interregnum
A council of clergymen- synod
The ceremony at which a man becomes a priest –ordination
A round or cylindrical container used for storing things such as food, chemicals or rolls of film - Canister
A place of permanent residence - Domicile
One who steals others written content - Plagiarist
That cannot be altered or withdrawn - Irrevocable
Money paid to employees on retirement - Gratuity
A place where clothes are kept - Wardrobe
Words uttered impiously about God - Blasphemy
One who compiles a dictionary - Lexicographer
Violating religious things –sacrilege
One who intolerantly devoted to a particular creed –bigot
Engaged to be married –betrodated
An instrument for recodings the revolutions of the earth –gyroscope
A poem of mourning- elegay
A hollow space in a wall for a  –niche
One who introduces performing artists on the stage program –compere
One who studies the pattern of voting in elections-  psephologist
Murder of one’s parents –parricide
Murder of one’s sister –sororicide
Let the cat out of the bag – Reveal a secret
Put the cart before the horse – Put or do things in the wrong order
A hard nut to crack – A difficult problem
By hook or by crook – By fair or foul means
All that glitters is not gold : things are not always as attractive as they appears
A good for nothing : a worth less person
A good Samaritan : a friend in need
A person who is filled with excessive enthusiasm – extrovert
A person who os bad in spelling –caco graphist
A person claiming to be superior in culture and intellect to others-  highbrow
Person obsessed with one idea or subject- monomaniac
Person who does not believe in any religion –pagan
Person who holds scholarship at a university –bursar
Person who is against the ordinary society esp. Dressing –hippy
Person who is always dissatisfied- malcontent
Person who lives alone and avoid others- recluse
Person who loves nature –aesthete
Person who pretends to have more knowledge charlatan
Persuasive and fluent speech eloquence
Physician who delivers babies –obstetrician
Place where cows are sheltered byre
Place which provides both board and lodging inn
Power of reading thoughts of others telepathy
Ridiculous use of works malapropism
Ride on someone’s back piggyback
Room leading into a large room anteroom
Seat on elephant’s back howdah
Song sung at burial dirge
Thing that bring gentle and painless death from incurable disease euthanasia
To explain a spiritual truth benign
To do away with rule abrogate
To explain a spiritual truth parable
Using of new words neology
A person who gives written testimony for use in a court –deponent
A person who makes, sells ladies hats, etc. –milliner
A small enclosure for cattle ,sheep, etc pen
Music played or sung at night below a person’s window serenade
Strong and settled dislike between two persons antipathy
A small house with all rooms on one floor bungalow
An extremely deep crack or opening in the ground chasm
Lottery in which an article is assigned by lot to one of those buying tickets raffle/draw
One who always runs away from danger timid
The act of violating the sanctity of church –sacrilege
A style in which a writer makes a display of his knowledge –pedantic
One who thinks that human nature is essentially evil –cynic
Interested mainly in a small group country etc. –insular
The period between two reigns- interregnum
One who despises persons of lower social position snob
Gradual recovery from illness convalescence
A low area storm with high winds rotating about a centre of
Low atmospheric pressure –cyclone
A fault that may be forgiven –venial
One who is likeable –amiable
Person who gives himself up to luxury and sexual pleasures –voluptuary
A field or a part of a garden where fruit trees grow –orchard
A women of lax moral –harlot


To mediate between two parties in a dispute- intercede
The branch of science which deals with the problems of the old –geriatrics
Property inherited from one’s father pr ancestors –patrimony
Something left in a will by someone who has died- legacy
The doctrine that human souls pass from one body to another at the time of death –transmigration
A drawing on transparent paper –transparency
One who is very careful and particular –meticulous
One who pays too much attention to his cloths and appearance- dandy
One who pretends illness to escape duty –malingerer
One who talks continuously –loquacious
One who deals in cattle –drover
One who cuts precious stones –lapidist(lapidary)
One who cure eye disease –oculist
One who sells sweets and pastries –confectioner
Poem in short stanzas narrating a popular story- ballad
One who does not know how to save the money- spendthrift
Walk in a vain , self‐important way –strut
Clumsy or ill‐bred fellow –boor
A small shop that sells fashionable clothes, cosmetics etc. –boutique
The normal abode of any animal or plant —habitat
A person who is skilled in horsemanship equestrian
To atone one’s sins –expiate
The rule of a person who is tyrant –despotism
Of outstanding significance –monumental
A tumour which is not likely to spared –benign
To remove the skin of a potato or and orange- peel
Explicit understanding to do something –promise
To surround with armed forces- besiege
A person who wishes to throw over all establishments –anarchist
Forcing out(blood etc.) From its vessel –extravasate
A book or picture produced merely to bring in money —pot‐boiler
Deviation or departure from common rule of standard –anomaly
Elderly women in charge of a girl on social occasions- chaperon
Land so surrounded by water as to e almost and island –peninsula
Part‐song for several voices without instrumental accompaniment   madrigal
A person without objective reality   –   hallucination
Open rebellion of soldiers and sailors against lawful authority  –mutiny
A verse letter    –    epistle
A person who travels from place to place  – itinerant
Something which can be taken for granted  – postulate
Words used in ancient time but no longer in general use now  – archaic
Cutting all the waste paper into pieces –  shredding
A solider who fights for money    – mercenary
Government by all      – pantisocracy
Two wheeled cab for two to ride indie with driver mounted up behind – hansom
Destroy without any trace – obliterate
Submarines operate below the surface of the seas-  subterranean
Morning prayer in the church regularly – matins
An unreal and visionary ideal – chimerical
Give back to the users their youthful vigor and appearance – rejuvenate
A lover of mankind   – altruist/philanthropist
An unconventional style of living –  bohemian
A person who is blindly devoted to an idea –  chauvinist
Suave (polished and light heart person) – debonair
A dabbler (not serious in art, science and literature-  dilettante
That cannot be entered by force – impregnable
A person who leads an immoral life libertine/lecher
One hates the institution of marriage –misogamist
One who eats everything – omnivorous
One who works for the welfare of the women –philogynist /feminist
A boastful fellow –swashbuckler
A noisy quarrelsome women, a shrew –termagant
One who is habitual drunken toper/sot
One who is brilliant performer on stage(specially music) –virtuoso
An annual calendar with position of stars- almanac
A statement accepted as true without proof –axiom
Examination of living tissue- biopsy
Compulsory enlistment for military service –conscription
An exact copy of handwriting ,printing –facsimile/xerox
Animals which live in a flock , used for human beings also gregarious/sociable
An act of separation from a person to avoid infection –quarantine
Dress with medals, ribbons worn at official ceremonies- regalia
One who is settles in another country –immigrant
One who knows many languages –polyglot
To talk through one’s hat :---To talk ignorantly
By word of mouth :--By spoken message
To kill two birds with one stone :---To achieve two results with one effort
To turn the tables :To reverse the situation
At the eleventh hour :---At the last moment
To burn one’s boats :-Go back on a decision
A burning question :-An important topic
Sitting on the fence :------Hesitate between two decisions
Cast away — to throw aside
By fits and starts – In short periods, not regularly
To kiss the book : to take an oath in a produce or commodities
To kiss the dust : to be defeated in battle
Someone not fit to be chosen - Ineligible
A laconic speech : a concise
To look to one's laurels : to take care not to lose one's place
To win laurels : to gain distinction or glory in s contest
To smell of the lamp : to show signs of strenuous preparation for an examination or a speech etc
Look before you leap : think before action

Hope this list of Idioms / One word substitution will help you in your preparation for SSC (CGL, CHSL, MTS & Others), IBPS (PO, SO, Clerk, RRB), SBI (PO, Clerk, SO), RBI etc. or any other exam in which these questions are asked.
All the best for your exams.
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