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Sayings

10 Sayings from Modern English

These are English sayings that are relatively modern in origin and come mainly from the 20th century.

Click on any saying for more information and notes.

Sayings

Crime doesn't pay American English

If you engage in illegal activities, you will not make money in the long run.

Garbage in, garbage out | GIGO American English

Incorrect or bad input results in incorrect or bad output.

If it ain't broke, don't fix it American English

If something is not faulty or damaged, don't try to repair it.

If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys British English

An employer who pays low wages will have bad staff.

Make love not war American English

1) Sex between people is better than fighting between countries. 2) Peace is better than war.

Put the pedal to the metal American English

Go as fast as possible.

There's no such thing as a free lunch American English

We cannot get something for nothing. We must pay for everything. Nothing in life is free.

What you see is what you get American English

1) There is nothing hidden. What you are looking at is the real thing. 2) In computing, the way something displays on the screen is the way it will display in print (or other media) -- hence the acronym WYSIWYG.

When the going gets tough, the tough get going American English

When a situation is difficult or dangerous, strong people work harder to resolve the problem. This saying relies on a difficult play on words; it could be rephrased word-for-word as: "When the situation becomes hard, strong people start working."

Would you buy a used car from this man? American English

Do you trust this man? I don't.

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