since 1997, the world's premier FREE website for learners + teachers of English
Get your 7 Secrets FREE
Idioms

forty winks

This page is about the idiom forty winks

INFORMAL

Meaning

If you have forty winks, you have a short sleep, or a nap.

For example

  • If I have a late night I sometimes catch forty winks on the train on the way to work.

  • If you're driving on a long trip and you feel yourself getting sleepy, stop and have forty winks. It might save your life, and the lives of other people too.

Quick Quiz

I'll sometimes have forty winks if

a. I see a pretty girl

b. I get something in my eye

c. I feel a bit sleepy

Idiom of the Day

Contributor: Matt Errey