Listen to the author reading this blog post:
Earlier this month, we published a blog post on idioms used to describe people arguing. Today’s post follows on from that and focuses instead on the nicer area of becoming friends again after an argument. Again, we’re looking at idioms and phrases with this meaning.
Anyway, I’d better go and make my peace with Ellie.
For now, the pair have buried the hatchet.
If you wipe the slate clean, you deliberately forget about disagreements you have had with someone in the past and start your relationship again:
I was prepared to forget about our differences and wipe the slate clean.
In UK English, the idiom sink your differences has a similar meaning, but it suggests that two people or groups agree to stop arguing in order to work together, often to oppose someone or something else:
The two parties eventually sank their differences and formed a coalition to oppose the government.
For a while, she appeared to be holding out an olive branch.
Sometimes, it’s impossible to agree with someone on a particular subject, in which case you might suggest that you agree to differ or agree to disagree, meaning that you both accept that your opinions are different:
I think we’ll just have to agree to differ on this one, Alex.
Sometimes an argument is solved when another person becomes involved. In UK English, someone who pours oil on troubled waters does or says something in order to calm people down and stop them arguing:
However, in my attempt to pour oil on troubled waters, I somehow made things worse.
Someone who keeps the peace succeeds in preventing arguments between other people:
My siblings don’t always get on so it’s my job to keep the peace.
If you want to suggest to someone that they forget about disagreements they have had with someone in the past, you might tell them to let bygones be bygones:
It’s been almost a decade since you two fell out. Can’t you just let bygones be bygones?
Finally, we use the idiom water under the bridge for saying that arguments (or bad experiences generally) that happened in the past belong in the past and are not important anymore:
We fell out over a guy when we were at college, but that’s water under the bridge now.
I hope you enjoyed my selection of idioms. Wishing you a happy, argument-free week!