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Learn British English: rain expressions


I’m going to post a video soon about “rain” in British English. As an accompaniment, here are a number of idioms and expressions we use regularly which include “rain”:


“It never rains but it pours”

Feel right as rain

You feel fine.


“You better now?”

Right as rain, thanks.”


It never rains but it pours

Rain is a metaphor for trouble in this expression. If it is raining a lot, it is pouring, so the expression means that there is always a lot of trouble, never a little.


Rain on someone’s parade

To spoil something for someone.

“He’s so miserable, he just likes to rain on other people’s parades.”


The rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain

This is a nonsensical rhyme, it is possibly designed as a speaking exercise. The underlined parts are all the same sound. (Like when we pronounce the letter, “a”.)


Rain, rain, go away, come back another day

This is a children’s rhyme said when it is raining and children want it to stop.


Rain check (noun)

If you take a rain check on something, you delay it for another time.

“Are we still meeting for dinner tonight?”

“I’m sorry, I’ll have to take a rain check.”


Come rain or shine

Someone always does something, in good or bad circumstances.

“If you want to speak English fluently you have to keep studying, come rain or shine.”


Save up for a rainy day

Save your money for a “rainy day” – this means for a time when things are difficult.

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