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Phrases of Collocations with AND

Phrases with ‘and’ are in common use in English collocations combining specific words in specific order. E.g: we say ‘give and take’, not ‘take and give’. Mostly such phrases are alliterative like ‘bag and baggage’. As a figurative speech these are desirable which add to the style and elegance of writing or speaking often with an emphasis. It is further interesting to note that constituent words of a phrase do not decide its part of speech. For example the phrase ‘bag and baggage’ is an Adverb though both the words of the phrase are noun. She left home bag and baggage. Similarly ‘off and on’ is Adjective whereas both the words are otherwise adverbs. ‘hard and fast’ is an adjective but ‘thick and fast’ is adverb and so is ‘give and take (concessions & compromises)’ which is a Noun phrase in spite of both ‘give’ and ‘take’ being verbs. As for adjective phrases, some are always used as attributive whereas others are always predicative. E.g: a hard and fast rule; rains have been few and far between this monsoon. Some phrases can be used both as an adjective and adverb. Consider following examples:

What flood victims need first and foremost is safe drinking water. [Adverb]

Arif Md Khan is a devout Muslim but he considers himself first and foremost an Indian. [Adjective]

Other such phrases are: ’up and down’, ‘down and out’, ‘out and about’, ‘nice and easy’, ‘nip and tuck (closely contested; neck and neck)’.

Following tables list more than 200 such phrases/idioms.

Noun Expressions

airs and graces (= an affectation of superiority) all and sundry bits and pieces bread and butter carrot and stick

(= reward & punishment) chalk and cheese

(= nothing in common)

checks and balances comings and goings cut and thrust

(= exciting and challenging) day and night (or night and day) death and destruction

doom and gloom facts and figures heaven and hell highways and byways

(= every narrow & broad road/ all paths traversed in journey of life) hustle and bustle ins and outs law and order life and death part and parcel (of…) pros and cons push and pull rise and fall rough and tumble

(= a free-for-all) salt and pepper spit and polish sticks and stones stresses and strains toil and trouble toing and froing trouble and strife twists and turns ups and downs wear and tear whys and wherefores

(= reasons)

Preposition Expressions

in and around above and beyond

over and above

Verb Expressions

aid and abet

chop and change

(= change opinion/ behaviour frequently and abruptly) come and go compare and contrast cut and run done and dusted duck and dive

give and take hem and haw (=hesitate ‘be indecisive)

huff and puff mind one's p's and q's

mix and match

mix and mingle

read and write skimp and save

wax and wane

wheel and deal

Adjective Expressions

be done and dusted

black and white bright and early

bright and breezy cheap and nasty dead and buried free and easy) high and dry (=helpless & difficult situation) high and mighty hit and miss home and dry(=within sight of achievement) off and on (or on and off) out and out (= absolute, in every respect) pure and simple safe and sound short and sweet

swings and roundabouts

touch and go tried and tested

up and coming

up and down willing and able

Adverb Expressions

again and again at (someone’s) beck and call (=ever ready to comply to someone’s commands) back and forth

by and by

by and large

by/in leaps and bounds

day and night (or night and day)

every now and then

far and away

far and wide

fast and furious(ly)

here and there (or hither and thither)

home and away

in dribs and drabs (= scattered or sporadic amount)

in fits and starts

in/by leaps and bounds

in this day and age

little and often

lo and behold

now and again

(every) now and then

off and on

out and about

over and over again

round and round

thick and fast (=rapidly and in great numbers)

through thick and thin

through and through(=thoroughly, completely)

time and (time) again

to all intents and purposes

to and fro

up and down

with care and attention

More of Idiomatic Expressions of Collocation with And

​(as) certain as death and taxes

(as) different as chalk and cheese

(as) sure as death and taxes

(as) different as night and day

the be-all and end-all

gentleman and a scholar

a hop, skip, and a jump

a hue and cry

a nudge (nod) and a wink

alive and kicking

all brawn and no brain

a place for everything, and everything in its place

after everything is said and done

all for one, and one for all

all is fair in love and war

all shapes and sizes

an open-and-shut case

and what have you

as clear as black and white

be damned if you do and damned if you don't

be at it hammer and tongs

be dragged kicking and screaming

be over and done with

be out of house and home

be sick and tired of (something)

​binge and purge (= eat a lot and vomit; figurative: overdo something and then abstain from it)

blow hot and cold

brains versus brawn

bright and breezy

bruised and battered

bubble and squeak

bricks and mortar

chapter and verse (every minute detail)


day in and day out

ebb and flow

enough and to spare

fight (someone or something) tooth and claw/ nail

fire and brimstone

fine and dandy

flesh and blood

flora and fauna

flotsam and jetsam

form and substance

footloose and fancy-free

hawks and doves

head and shoulders above

heart and soul

home and hearth/hearth and home (comfort and warmth of family)

hell and high water

​Hellfire and Damnation!

here and now

hook, line, and sinker (=without hesitation or reservation because of perfect deception)

hop, skip, and a jump

lean and mean

life and limb

milk and honey

nook and cranny

honest and aboveboard

judge, jury, and executioner

Jekyll and Hyde

left, right, and centre

(a)live and well

null and void

nothing but skin and bones

all skin and bones

prim and proper

sick and tired of (something)

sit up and take notice, to (make someone)

spic and span

sword and sorcery

swift and sure

the haves and the have-nots

sum and substance

up and about/doing

tweedledum and tweedledee

ways and means

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