Being on the fiddle means being corrupt or getting more than you should from the system. It is a nautical term which refers to the raised edges of the square dinner plates used on board ships. The raised edges (known as fiddles) prevented the food from sliding or rolling off during rough seas. Being on the fiddle meant being given sufficient food to overflow onto the fiddle. Fellow sailors would suspect those given extra food of underhand deals with the ship's staff or cooks.
Test Your Knowledge of English Proverbs and Idioms
Here are three randomly selected questions from a larger exercise, which can be edited, printed to create an exercise worksheet, or sent via email to friends or students.
Download a Free Grammar Checker Download Grammarly's app to help with eliminating grammar errors and finding the right words.
(The Grammarly app works with webmail, social media, and texting apps as well as online forms and Microsoft Office documents like Word.)
Self Help: Buy Our Book
"Smashing Grammar" (2019) Written by the founder of Grammar Monster, "Smashing Grammar" includes a glossary of grammar essentials (from apostrophes to zeugma) and a chapter on easily confused words (from affect/effect to whether/if). Each entry starts with a simple explanation and basic examples before moving to real-life, entertaining examples. All entries conclude with a section highlighting why the grammar point is relevant for a writer and top-level bullet points summarizing the entry. [More…]
"Grammar for Grown-ups" (2011) Vocational rather than academic, "Grammar for Grown-ups" is packed with real-life examples and keeps you engaged with a wealth of great quotations from Homer the Greek to Homer the Simpson. Straight talking and methodical, Craig Shrives draws on his years compiling Grammar Monster and as an army officer to present a comprehensive but light-hearted and easily digestible grammar reference guide. [More…]