Quiz: Can You Identify These Commonly Misused Phrases?
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Can You Identify These Commonly Misused Phrases?
By: Maria Trimarchi
Image: Hinterhaus Productions/ DigitalVision/gettyimages

About This Quiz

Would you say you've got a handle on common phrases in English? What does that mean, anyway, to have a handle on something? Speaking and writing sure would be easier if words and sentences had literal handles that we could grab onto.

In this doggie-dog world, mistakes in speech or writing could keep you from getting a promotion - or even a job. (Or should that be, in this dog-eat-dog world?) If you think you have an excellent command of language, curve your enthusiasm. (Or should you curb it?) Do these common mistakes make you want to curl up in the feeble position?

Sometimes people misspeak because they have misheard other people. Other times, phrases morph in meaning over time, and the original turn of phrase is replaced by a newer version. If you say something incorrectly, rude people will cast you off as a social leopard/leper, but your true friends will charitably assume you're joking or being self-depreciating/deprecating. The bottom line is, your true friends could (or couldn't?) care less.

Let's make one last-stitch/ditch effort to save you, me and the English-speaking world from these funny and/or painful common phrasing mistakes. Take this quiz about common English phrases to strut your stuff/stuffing!

1.0 of 35
The new coffee shop is _____ opening next month.
2.0 of 35
3.0 of 35
The argument that Shakespeare may not have written all his plays and poems remains, among critics, a _______.
4.0 of 35
You should run for office - since the incumbent is retiring, you're a _____ for the position.
5.0 of 35
Just one small bite of it was enough to _____.
6.0 of 35
If it's been 12 to 24 hours since you last ate, you can expect _____.
7.0 of 35
_____ of what they've done wrong, every person deserves a fair trial.
8.0 of 35
If it's _____ you're after, try practicing mindful meditation.
9.0 of 35
10.0 of 35
It was _____ how the cat would run along the banister.
11.0 of 35
_________ causes as many as 70% of all cases of dementia.
12.0 of 35
This is just a preliminary concept - if you like it, it can be _____ later on.
13.0 of 35
Because of all the hard work they put into it, they were given a _____ of the film project.
14.0 of 35
Because he wasn't caught or punished for his crime, he _____.
15.0 of 35
Missiles _____ on their targets.
16.0 of 35
When military troops are gathered for inspection, each hopes to _____.
17.0 of 35
However, he said, _____, the real ceremony would be held several months prior.
18.0 of 35
_________, homes sales in the county have bounced back.
19.0 of 35
If you can't imagine a day without sneaking in even a little bit of reading, it's a _____ habit.
20.0 of 35
Has anyone ever told you you're a _____ of your mother?
21.0 of 35
We tried not to laugh at her _____ comment.
22.0 of 35
He quickly figured out that the group planned to make a _____ of him.
23.0 of 35
His manager gave him _____ over the project.
24.0 of 35
Noticing she'd started to spend too much time binge-watching TV from the sofa, she decided to _____.
25.0 of 35
It is feared the hurricane will _____ along the coast.
26.0 of 35
If something _____, it means most people have stopped using it (or doing it or making it, etc.).
27.0 of 35
"Having wet hair in the cold will make you sick" is an example of an _____.
29.0 of 35
First come, _____ state parks don't accept reservations for campsites.
30.0 of 35
It was an unspoken rule at the office: _____ or get fired from the group.
31.0 of 35
I'll be waiting with _____, she said anxiously.
32.0 of 35
The kids are so excited about their upcoming Disney vacation that they're _____.
33.0 of 35
When you decide to try another approach, you're taking _____.
34.0 of 35
Not everyone can pull off the national anthem. _____: after her performance at the NBA All-Star Game, the singer faced backlash from the Twitterverse.
35.0 of 35
If that's what you think, then you've got another _____.
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