oil the wheels
help something go smoothly
Related Idioms and Phrases :
over the odds
above what is generally considered acceptable especially for a price – British
shout the odds
talk loudly and in an opinionated way
what is the odds?
what does it matter? - Informal
be in good odour with someone = be in bad odour with someone
be in (or out of) favour with someone
odour of sanctity
a state of holiness
sanctimoniousness - derogatory
This expression is a translation of the French idiom odeur de sainteté. It refers to a sweet or balsamic odour which was reputedly emitted by the bodies of saints at or after
death and which was regarded as evidence of their sanctity.
off and on
now and then
off and running
making good progress
a hanging offence
a fault or crime so serious that the perpetrator should be executed
1998 – Spectator - It is hardly a hanging offence to overlook telegrams about a small African country, but surely the Prime Minister must read JIC reports?
help and support often given by exercising your influence
2002 - Daily Telegraph – Mr. Blair will demonstratively use his good offices to bring round the German and French leaders, thereby gaining prestige in Washington.
just another day at the office
1997 - Times - Professional cricket has been reduced to just another day at the office.
in the offing
likely to happen or appear soon
This expression originated as a nautical term for a distance offshore, beyond a harbour or anchoring ground. It has been used figuratively since the late 18th century.
burn the midnight oil
read or work late into the night
oil his palm
bribe someone – informal
This phrase comes from the practice of applying grease to a machine to make it run smoothly. The same expression exists in French as graisser la patte. The form with palm is now predominant but hand appears in the earliest recorded versions of the idiom, dating from the 16th century.
1998 - Economist - Licences to run a shop [in Italy]... have caused many an official's palm to be greased.
no oil painting
not very attractive – British informal
oil and water
two elements or factors or people that do not agree or blend together
Water and oil are two liquid substances that repel each other and cannot be mixed together.
pour oil on troubled waters
settle a disagreement or dispute with words intended to placate or pacify those involved.
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