Are you looking for the best fish idioms?
If so, you have come to the right place.
In this post, we will take a look at 27 of my favorite idioms about fish.
Let’s get started…
27 Fish Idioms And Phrases To Use In Everday English
1. A Fish Out Of Water
- Meaning: A person who doesn’t feel comfortable in a new environment/situation.
- Synonyms: misfit, ugly duckling, out of place, a square peg in a round hole
- Use in a sentence: Jane felt like a fish out of water when she first moved to America. However, after many years here, she finally feels like a local.
2. Cold Fish
- Meaning: Someone that shows little to no emotion and thus comes off as unfriendly or distant to those around them.
- Synonyms: unemotional person, aloof person, iceberg
- Use in a sentence: She acted like a cold fish on our first date, but later her friend told me that she was just really nervous.
3. To Fish For Compliments
- Meaning: an attempt to get praise from other people.
- Use in a sentence: Trent said he isn’t the type of guy to fish for a compliment and I believe him. He has always been very humble.
4. There are plenty of other fish in the sea
- Meaning: There are other more suitable choices.
- Use in a sentence: Megan was sad after she broke up with Andrew, but I told her not to be sad. There are plenty of other fish in the sea.
5. To Drink Like A Fish
- Meaning: to drink a lot of alcohol.
- Use in a sentence: He drinks like a fish yet stays in shape. I don’t understand how that is possible.
6. To Have Other/Bigger/Better Fish To Fry
- Meaning: to have other more important to do.
- Use in a sentence: “Wow, Susan was really short with me today.” “Don’t worry, don’t take it personally. It is just that she has bigger fish to fry.”
7. A Pretty/Fine Kettle Of Fish
- Meaning: a difficult, annoying or unpleasant situation to be in.
- Synonyms: tight corner, tricky situation, dilemma, crisis, back against the wall, mess
- Use in a sentence: After firing Jessica, he found himself in a pretty kettle of fish.
8. To Fish In Troubled Waters
- Meaning: to benefit by getting involved in somebody else’s problems.
- Synonyms: to take advantage, to capitalize
- Use in a sentence: He likes to buy stops in companies that are going out of business. I guess sometimes fishing in troubled waters can be very profitable.
9. To Fish (Something or Someone) Out Of (Something or Someone)
- Meaning: to find or retrieve something or to pull something out.
- Use in a sentence: Mallory wanted to fish through her mom’s purse for evidence but Kimmy convinced her that that would be a bad idea.
10. To Fish For Something
- Meaning: to try to get some information out of somebody.
- Use in a sentence: I could tell by his broad, open-ended questions that he was just fishing for information, but don’t worry I didn’t say anything.
11. Like Shooting Fish In A Barrel
- Meaning: An activity that is extremely easy to do.
- Use in a sentence: “I have never gone scuba diving before, is it easy?” “Don’t worry, it is easy, it is like shooting fish in a barrel.”
12. To Fishtail
- Meaning: when the back of a vehicle whips back and forth in an uncontrolled manner
- Synonyms: wobble, swerve, swing
- Use in a sentence: Mathias loved driving in the winter except for when his Cadillac would fishtail in the snow.
13. Fish-Eating Grin
- Meaning: An overly satisfied smile intended to annoy others.
- Synonyms: Smirk
- Use in a sentence: He has been walking around with that same fish-eating grin ever since he got a promotion.
14. Big Fish In A Small Pond
- Meaning: a person who has more experience, knowledge, power than others in a small field or group of people.
- Use in a sentence: After he changes departments, he will become a big fish in a small pond.
15. Fish Tale
- Meaning: a lie or an exaggeration of the truth.
- Synonyms: Pull someone’s leg, fib
- Use in a sentence: Everyone seemed to believe Luke’s story, but if you ask me, it was all a fish tale.
- Meaning: (British English) used to describe a person that is weird or strange.
- Use in a sentence: Angela is sort of an odd-fish. She’s always a little off from where her peers are.
17. To Be Crooked As A Barrel Of Fish Hooks
- Meaning: a deceitful person; one who can’t be trusted. Dishonest
- Use in a sentence: Be careful about during business with him, he is as crooked as a barrel of fish hooks.
18. Cry Stinking Fish
- Meaning: (British English) to put oneself down.
- Use in a sentence: Don’t cry stinking fish! You are a talented musician.
19. To Fish Around
- Meaning: to look for something.
- Use in a sentence: Though Stanley wanted to fish around his neighbor’s yard for the gold coin, his wife stopped him from doing so.
20. Fish Eye
- Meaning: to give someone a mean look; to glare
- Synonyms: gaze, rubbernecking, scrutiny
- Use in a sentence: I could tell she was upset by the way she gave me the fish eye in class.
- Meaning: to kiss someone with puckered lips like a fish
- Use in a sentence: Ryan fish-kiss his girlfriend right in front of the whole school.
22. A Big Fish
- Meaning: an important or influential person
- Synonyms: big shot, big gun, the big cheese
- Use in a sentence: Doug got promoted, he is the big fish now.
23. Teach A Man To Fish
- Meaning: it comes from a famous proverb that goes like this, “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” In other words, take the time to teach somebody how to do something rather than do it for them.
- Use in a sentence: Rather than doing it for him, why don’t you teach him how to fish.
24. The Cat Would Eat Fish, But Would Not Wet Her Feet
- Meaning: In order to succeed, you need to be willing to take risks/chances
- Use in a sentence: Don’t be afraid, remember the cat would eat fish, but would not wet her feet.
25. All Is Fish That Comes To the Net
- Meaning: a person that uses everything available to him to complete a task.
- Use in a sentence: He took advantage of all the opportunities he had in school to learn – all is fish that comes to the net.
26. To Need Something Like A Fish Needs A Bicycle
- Meaning: used to describe something that you don’t need.
- Use in a sentence: I am happy with my computer. I need a new computer like a fish needs a bicycle.
27. To Sleep With The Fishes
- Meaning: to murder someone and then dump the body in a body of water such as a lake, river or ocean.
- Example in a sentence: I heard the guy with the gun tell Mark that he is going to sleep with the fishes.
There you have it! 27 idioms about fish. Which one was your favorite? Share your thoughts in the comments below.