Impress Your English Friends With 6 Age Related Idioms!

As ‘Age’ has been our monthly topic for October we thought that we would go through some of our favorite age related idioms. Remember these idioms are great for making your English sound just that little bit more colloquial and conversational.

1. To be Long in the Tooth

This expression indicates that somebody is too old to do something. For Example:

  • He is very long in the tooth to pursue a career in football.

This idiom derives from how we determine a horses age by checking their mouths as older horses will have less gums making their teeth appear longer.

2. To rob the Cradle

We use this expression to indicate that a person is dating somebody else much younger than them. For Example:

  • My Uncle Ted is dating a 20 year old girl. That’s really robbing the cradle!

The idiom suggests that a young person is being stolen away by a much older person.

3. To Have a Senior Moment

To have a senior moment means to have a temporary loss of concentration or memory. For example:

  • I had a senior moment and forgot where I put my phone.

This Idiom comes from the fact that forgetfulness and loss of memory are common symptoms of getting older.

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4. To be no Sping Chicken

We use this expression to describe somebody who is getting older. For example:

        My uncle can’t run like he used to, he’s no spring chicken.


The earliest uses of this phrase date back to the 1700s when farmers would try to sell older chickens who had lived through the winter as young spring born chickens. The buyers of these chickens would then return them complaining that they were «no spring chickens

5. Mutton Dressed as Lamb

This idiom means that somebody is dressing like a much younger person. For example:

  • The style doesn’t suit her, she looks like a mutton dressed as lamb.

A mutton refers to an adult sheep, whereas a lamb refers to baby sheep. This expression dates back to a social gossip journal from 1811. The journal states that George IV, the Prince of Wales at the time, when discussing his preference for older women exclaimed: «Girls are not to my taste. I don’t like lamb; but mutton dressed like lamb!»

6. Act Your Age

Normally we use this idiom when an adult is behaving like a child. For example:

  • Stop being silly and act your age.

I hope that you enjoyed learning about these 6 Idioms, if you have any further questions leave a comment below!

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