in the context of language has two principal meanings:
(1) the manner of expression that characterizes a language, and
(2) a group of words that has a meaning not deducible from the individual words.
The first can therefore be seen as the sum total of all the instances of the second. Examples of idioms in the concrete second meaning are over the moon, under the weather, might as well, and hard put to it. The adjective idiomatic draws on both these meanings in denoting what is natural and customary in the use of a language; as Fowler recognized (1926), ‘grammar and idiom are separate categories’, so that a mode of expression can be idiomatic or grammatical or both or neither. Fowler's various examples are still valid and useful: It was not me and There is heaps of material are idiomatic but ungrammatical, The distinction leaps to the eyes and a hardly earned income are grammatical but unidiomatic, He was promoted captain and She all but capsized are both grammatical and idiomatic, and You would not go for to do it is neither.

Modern English usage. 2014.

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(sanctioned by use in any language) / (of a language), /

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Idiom — Id i*om ([i^]d [i^]*[u^]m), n. [F. idiome, L. idioma, fr. Gr. idi wma, fr. idioy^n to make a person s own, to make proper or peculiar; fr. i dios one s own, proper, peculiar; prob. akin to the reflexive pronoun o y^, o i^, e , and to eo s, o s,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • idiom — IDIÓM, idiomuri, s.n. Termen general care denumeşte o unitate lingvistică (limbă, dialect sau grai). [pr.: di om] – Din fr. idiome. Trimis de gall, 13.09.2007. Sursa: DEX 98  IDIÓM s. v. dialect, grai, limbă. Trimis de siveco, 13.09.2007. Sursa …   Dicționar Român

  • Idiom — Sn Spracheigentümlichkeit, Phrase per. Wortschatz fach. (16. Jh.) Entlehnung. Über ml. idiōma entlehnt aus gr. idíōma Eigentümlichkeit , besonders sprachliche Eigentümlichkeit (Sprachausprägung oder Phrase); dieses zu gr. ídios eigen, selbst . In …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • idiom — idìōm m <G idióma> DEFINICIJA 1. lingv. a. svaki od entiteta jezika koji se ne želi označiti ni kao jezik, ni kao dijalekt, ni kao govor b. poseban i prepoznatljiv govor nekog kraja ili pojedinog govornika c. riječ ili izraz svojstven nekom …   Hrvatski jezični portal

  • idiom — [id′ē əm] n. [< Fr & LL: Fr idiome < LL idioma < Gr idiōma, peculiarity, idiom < idios: see IDIO ] 1. the language or dialect of a people, region, class, etc. 2. the usual way in which the words of a particular language are joined… …   English World dictionary

  • idiom — {{/stl 13}}{{stl 8}}rz. mnż, D. u, Mc. idiommie {{/stl 8}}{{stl 20}} {{/stl 20}}{{stl 12}}1. {{/stl 12}}{{stl 7}} wyrażenie lub zwrot językowy, którego nie należy rozumieć dosłownie, ponieważ jego znaczenie nie wynika ze znaczeń poszczególnych… …   Langenscheidt Polski wyjaśnień

  • Idiom — (v. gr.), 1) Eigenthümlichkeit, bes. einer Sprache; 2) bestimmte Art des Ausdruckes; wozu auch die besondere Aussprache u. Ton, die Wörter u. ihre Bedeutung, die Wortfügung u. die ganze Verbindung der Rede gehören, z.B. I. der gebildeten Stände;… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Idiōm — (griech.), »Eigentümlichkeit«, besonders einer Sprache oder einer Mundart, daher überhaupt soviel wie Sprache oder Mundart …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Idiom — Idiōm (grch., d.i. Eigentümlichkeit), eigentümliche Sprechweise, Mundart, Dialekt; Idiomăta, die Wesenseigentümlichkeiten der beiden Naturen Christi; idiomātisch, das I. betreffend, dazu gehörig …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Idiom — Idiom, Eigenthümlichkeit, charakteristische Besonderheit in der Aussprache: Mundart. B–l …   Damen Conversations Lexikon

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