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black idioms

10 Black Idioms

20 black idioms

The color black is more than just a shade; it’s a doorway to many expressions in English. “Black” idioms can describe everything from unexpected events to formal attire. In this article, we’ll explore 10 “black” idioms, with simple explanations and examples to help you understand and use them in everyday conversations. Let’s see the many ways “black” can color your English!

1. Pitch black

Very dark, without any light.

The room was pitch black when the lights went out.
The night sky was pitch black, making it hard to see the stars.

2. Black market

An illegal marketplace where things are sold.

They bought goods on the black market.
Black market trading led to illegal sales of rare items.

3. Black sheep

Someone who stands out or is different from others in a group.

John is the black sheep of the family because he doesn’t like sports.
Mary is the black sheep of her family since she chose a career in art, while her siblings are doctors.

4. Black and white

Clear or obvious, with no room for doubt.

The rules are black and white.
The decision was black and white, either take the job or decline it.

5. Black as night

Very dark or without light.

The room was black as night.
The forest was black as night, making it difficult to see anything.

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6. In the black

Financially stable or making money.

The company is in the black this year.
After a tough year, the business is back in the black, turning a profit.

7. Black tie

Formal clothes, such as tuxedos and gowns, formal attire.

The event is black tie, so we need to dress up.
The gala requires black tie attire, meaning men wear tuxedos, and women wear gowns.

8. Blacklist

A list of people or things to avoid.

That company is on my blacklist.
The restaurant ended up on the health inspector’s blacklist for multiple violations.

9. Black swan

An unexpected event with a major impact.

The pandemic was a black swan.
The financial crisis was a black swan, catching many businesses off guard.

10. The pot calling the kettle black

Accusing someone of something that you also do.

John said Lisa was messy, but that’s the pot calling the kettle black.
Criticizing others for being late is like the pot calling the kettle black, considering he always arrives late.

Did you find the black idioms interesting? Make sure to also explore our article on money idioms!

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