Idioms beginning with N. Select an idiom for more details.

(someone's) name is mud INFORMAL

If someone's name is mud, other people are angry with them, or they're no longer popular, because they've done something wrong.

a narrow escape

If you have a narrow escape, you survive a dangerous situation, but only just.

a necessary evil

If you say something is a necessary evil, you don't like it but you understand that it has to be accepted sometimes or it has to exist.

a nest egg

If you have a nest egg, you have money put away for the future.

a new lease of life British English

If someone has a new lease of life, they have a new enthusiasm for living.

a new lease on life American English

If someone has a new lease on life, they have a new enthusiasm for living.

a night on the town | out on the town

If you have a night on the town, or go out on the town, you go out for dinner and then go to a show or a dance club or some other entertainment venue.

a night owl

You're a night owl if you like to stay up and do things late at night.

neck and neck

If two competitors are running neck and neck in a race, they are almost level.

neck of the woods INFORMAL

A neck of the woods is a neighbourhood or a district, usually rural.

neither here nor there

You can say something is neither here nor there if it's not important, or not relevant.

nerves of steel

If you have nerves of steel, you are very brave and not many things make you scared or nervous.

Never mind.

You can say "never mind" when you want someone not to worry or feel bad about something, or not to bother doing something.

Never say die!

You can say "Never say die!" if you want to tell someone to keep trying while there's still a chance of success.

next to nothing

If something costs next to nothing, it costs very little, or nearly nothing.

nip it in the bud

If you nip something in the bud, you stop a problem from becoming serious by dealing with it as soon as you notice it.

no holds barred

If something is done with no holds barred, it's done without restriction, rules or restraint.

No sweat! INFORMAL

You can say "No sweat!" if someone asks you if you can do something, and you're sure you can do it.

No way! American English INFORMAL

You can say "No way!" when you want to strongly reject an offer, a request, or a suggestion.

not your cup of tea

If something is not your cup of tea, it's not what you like or what you're interested in.

nothing to write home about

If you say something is nothing to write home about, you mean it isn't very important or it isn't very good.

now and then | now and again

If you do something now and then, or now and again, you do it occasionally.

now or never

If you say it's now or never, you mean that something has to be done now or it can't be done at all.

the name of the game

You can say something is the name of the game if it's the most important thing you need to know or to have in order to succeed at something.

the new kid on the block American English INFORMAL

If you are the new kid on the block, you are the newest person in a workplace or in an educational institute, or any other place or organization.

Contributor: Matt Errey