With Valentine’s Day almost upon us, our attention at About Words has turned to love, or more specifically, the various phrases and idioms that we use to describe romantic love. If love is on your mind, read on…
We’ll begin this post with the start of romantic love. When you fall in love, you start to love someone romantically: They met in the spring of 2009 and fell madly in love.
If you start to love someone from the first time you see them, you may describe the experience as love at first sight: Al and I met in a friend’s kitchen and it was love at first sight for both of us.
To describe the same experience of immediate, very strong, romantic love for someone, you may say that they sweep you off your feet: The first time I met her, I was completely swept off my feet. Meanwhile, although this phrase describes a slightly less intense feeling, if you take a shine to someone you have just met, you start to like them immediately: I think Karl’s taken a bit of a shine to your sister.
An idiom that is used to describe great strength of feeling, rather than the start of that feeling is head over heels. If you describe yourself as head over heels (in love) with someone, you mean you are completely in love, with very strong feelings: The actor is reportedly head over heels in love with his co-star.
In a relationship, if someone loves and admires their partner very much, it is sometimes said that they worship the ground that they walk on: I’ve never known anything like it – he worships the ground she walks on.
Sadly, in the real world not all couples get to live happily ever after (=happy together for the rest of their lives). Love sometimes ends. If you break someone’s heart, you make them very sad, usually because you have stopped loving them: She was crazy about Daniel and it broke her heart when he left her.
Sometimes, a person has strong feelings for someone who does not love them. For this sad situation, we use the phrase unrequited love: James was very keen on a woman that he worked with but sadly, it was a case of unrequited love.
Meanwhile, someone who is said to carry a torch for a person, loves or admires them over a long period, even when the person does not realise this: He’s been carrying a torch for Rebecca for years.
Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!
32 thoughts on “Head over heels! (Love idioms)”
You said (…They met in the spring of 2009 and fell madly in love.)
why not :they met in the spring of 2009 and have madly fallen in love ?
Hi, Jamal! That’s because 2009 is a specific point in time, and when we mention a specific time we always use the Simple Past! Hope it helps!
Hi! Yes, Harumi is absolutely right. You might say ‘They’ve fallen in love’ with no time reference, but that would mean they have recently started to love each other. But yes, when you mention a time in the past, as Harumi says, you need the past simple. Best wishes to you both!
You said when specific time, always use simple past. Isn’t it specific time in the past.
because it is the Past Simple Tense (spring, 2009). never use the Present Perfect with particular time in the past. fell in love refers to spring 2009 when they met.
Very Nice Article!
With moot point being, anyone who gives it a read, being able to realize the meaning of at least one of these idioms, having encountered the situations these idioms represent somewhere in their life
Thank you, Chirag! We’re pleased you enjoyed it!
They met……… and fell in love sounds more immediate and natural, and falling in love with sb itself is the focus here, not the effects of it (have fallen in love)
I shown her every idiom. I opened my heart with all piousness and devotion . But it proved to be in vain.
I will not have any regret in future. All I would say is….You are special for me and very special. Any thing for you. If she come across to this then be sure that he was always her.
Please ignore the above.
loved it ,
got new idioms and it gonna be useful for me .
Great, Roshan! Thanks for getting in touch!
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Hiii…thnks for this lovely collection of phrases and words…Happy Valentine’s day everyone:)
Aswathi, you’re very welcome. And the same to you!
am intrigued, thanks for this looking forward to more of it…kudos 👍👍👍
And to you also! Thanks for getting in touch.
I love this article! Many thanks!
Hope to see more interesting thing from you!.
Thanks, Therese! We’ll certainly do our best.
They met in the spring of 2009 and have madly fallen in love SINCE is possible, if you are keen on that ‘have’
Worship the ground they walk on was new one in English though i knew exact idiom in my native language. Nice 🙂
Ah, that’s interesting, Zaheer. Best wishes to you!
One of the finest articles I read about idioms on love. Please keep writing on other related idioms in future as well.
Thank you so much! We often post articles on idioms, so do keep checking in. Best wishes!
Pingback: Head over heels! (Love idioms) – Cambridge Dictionary About words blog (Feb 08, 2017) | Editorial Words
I fell here accidentally
It is nice that i learnt about the idiom carry a torch for sb. Nice to have found out another way to express oneself really :()
Realise with “s”. Is that right?
Can you tell where we use “A+ Superlative degree” and “The + Superlative degree” ?
This reminds me Shakira’s song- Whenever, whenever. She has used this idiom in this song.. 🙂
We’re meant to be together
I’ll be there and you’ll be near
And that’s the deal my dear
There over, hereunder
You’ve got me head over heels
There’s nothing left to fear
If you really feel the way I feel
Thank you Kate for explaining its meaning. I have also read your other articles about Phrasal verbs and idioms, they are amazing and informative.
Reblogged this on egilbi and commented:
oh love, I love you