Friday, 27 April 2012

Game of Thrones, depend on

Game of Thrones, Series 01, Episode 08, The pointy end

Sansa Stark (talking about her father): What will happen to him?
Cersei Lannister: That depends.
Sansa Stark:  On what?
Cersei Lannister: On your brother... and on you

depend on sb or sthing: It is directly affected or decided by that thing or person

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Agravaine to Gwen, run out, let in

Agravaine to Gwen, after closing the doors.

Agravaine: If we keep letting people in, our food will run out - within days.

run out of something: to use all of something and have no more left
let somebody in: admit, allow to enter

Friday, 13 April 2012

Being Human, spick and span

Being Human, Series 04, Episode 04, A Spectre Calls

Kirby (to Annie): Oh, right, we'll get this place spick and span in no time. I
mean, the rest of the house is fab.

Spick and span: completely clean and tidy

The World at War, as well as

The World at War, Episode 4, Alone, May 1940 - May 1941

Narrator: to the relief of the authorities, Buckingham Palace was bombed as well as East London. Now it could be seen that King, Queen and people were all in it together.

as well as: in addition to something or something else

The World at War, we ran out of water

The World at War, Episode 4, Alone, May 1940 - May 1941

Fireman: Eventually, we used so much water we ran out of it and there we stood - letting the fires burn - and we couldn't do anything about it.

run out of something: to use all of something and have no more left

The World at War, In office

The World at War, Episode 4, Alone, May 1940 - May 1941

Narrator: Among the casualties of the raid on May 10th was the House of Commons. Exactly a year - a year of disappointment - the Commons had sustained Churchill in office, but the important battle had been won. Britain had survived. Now it was Russia's turn.

In office: while he was Prime Minister, in this case. An important job in Government.

Tony Blair, His Greatest Speech, a fully paid-up member

Blair's valedictory at the Labour Party conference in 2006 just as he steps down as British Prime Minister.

"... and they taught me that most of Politics isn't about politics in sense of meetings and resolutions, speeches and even parties sometimes. It starts with people, it's about friendship, and art, and culture and sport. It's actually about being a fully paid-up member of the human race before being a fully paid-up member of the Labour Party."
Valedictory: a speech or Statement in which you say goodbye
a fully paid-up member of a group: when someone strongly supports what that group likes or believes in

Sherlock, Get off with someone

Sherlock, Series 01, Episode 02, The blind banker.

Sherlock: All I need to do is have a quick look around the place
Dr. Watson: Fine. You do that, I'll take Sarah for a pint.
Sherlock: I need your help
Dr. Watson: I do have a couple of other things on my mind this evening.
Sherlock: Like what?
Dr. Watson: You are kidding? What's so important? Sherlock, I'm right in the middle of a date. You're going to chase some killer while I'm trying to...
Sherlock: What?
Dr. Watson: While I'm trying to get off with Sarah. Hey... Ready?
Sarah: Yeah.

To get off with someone: to start a sexual relationship with someone

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Sherlock , either way

Sherlock, Series 01, Episode 01, A Study in Pink

Jeff: It's pure genius. I know how people think. I know how people think I think. I can see it all like a map inside my head. Everyone's so stupid, even you. Or maybe God just loves me. 
Sherlock Holmes: Either way, you're wasted as a cabbie

either way: used to say that something will be the same whichever of two things happens or is true.

cabbie: a taxi driver (also cabby)

Sherlock, a three-patch problem

Sherlock, Series 01, Episode 01, A Study in Pink

Dr. John Watson: What are you doing? 
Sherlock Holmes: Nicotine patch. Helps me think. It's impossible to sustain a smoking habit in London these days. 
Dr. John Watson: That's good news for breathing. 
Sherlock Holmes: Ah, breathing. Breathing's boring. 
Dr. John Watson: Is that three patches? 
Sherlock Holmes: It's a three-patch problem. 

Like a five-pound note (a fiver) or a ten-pound note (a tenner)

Sherlock, to be out of your depth

Sherlock, Series 01, Episode 01, A Study in Pink

Dr John Watson: Who are you? What do you do? 
Sherlock Holmes: What do you think? 
Dr John Watson: I'd say private detective... 
Sherlock Holmes: But? 
Dr John Watson: But the police don't consult private detectives. 
Sherlock Holmes: I'm a consulting detective. The only one in the world - I invented the job. 
Dr John Watson: What does that mean? 
Sherlock Holmes: It means when the police are out of their depth - which is always - they consult me. 

to be out of your depth: to be involved in a situation or activity which is difficult for you to understand or deal with

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Sherlock, to break into my flat

Sherlock, Series 01, Episode 01, A Study in Pink

Sherlock Holmes: You can't just break into my flat.

DI Lestrade: And you can't withhold evidence. And I didn't break into your flat.

Sherlock Holmes: Well what do you call this then?

DI Lestrade: ...It's a drugs bust.

Break into: to enter a building or a car by using force in order to steal something

(bust : a situation in which the police go into a place in order to catch people doing something illegal)

Churchill broadcasts to the world: If we can stand up to him

The World at War, Episode 4, Alone, May 1940 - May 1941

Narrator: (...) left of Dunkirk surrounded on June the 4th. Thousands of troops could not be rescued. A fortnight later, France stopped fighting and the British Prime Minister Churchill broadcasts to the world:

Winston Churchill: What General Weygand has called the battle of France is over, the battle of Britain is about to begin. Hitler knows that he will have to break us in this Island or lose the war. If we can stand up to him, all Europe may be freed and the life of the world may move forward into broad, sunlit uplands. But if we fail, then the whole world will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age. Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duty, and so bear ourselves that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, ‘This was their finest hour.’

Fortnight: two weeks.

Break somebody: to make someone feel that they have been completely defeated and they cannot continue working or living.

Stand up to somebody: to be on your feet, to refuse to accept unfair treatment from a person or organization.

Sunlit: made brighter from the light of sun.

uplands: the parts of a country that are far from the sea and are higher than other areas.

brace yourself: to prepare to do something

bear yourself: to walk, to stand, in a particular way, especially when this shows your character.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Dick Turpin, Two of a kind, you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours

Dick Turpin, Series 02, Episode 03. The Blood Money

Dick Turpin: Look at them. Two of a kind.
Swiftnick: What do you mean?
Dick Turpin: Well, you scratch my back, Colonel de Coursey and I'll scratch yours.

(Two/three, etc of a kind = two/three, etc people or things that are very similar)
(You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours = used to say that you'll help someone if they agree to help you)

Friday, 6 April 2012

Being Human, When McNair wants to kill Herrick

Being Human, Series 3, Episode 07. Though the Heavens Fall

Herrick (to McNair):  I must warn you Mitchell is very keen on keeping me alive.

(Keen on doing something = wanting to do something or wanting something to happen very much)

Being Human, When Mitchell is arrested

Being Human, Series 3, Episode 07. Though the Heavens Fall

Nancy:  John Mitchell, you're under arrest of murder. You do not have to say anything. But it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence.

Mitchell: You've no idea what you've done.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

The World at War, the battle of France was now over

The World at War, Episode 03. France Falls (June 1940)

Narrator:  In the words of Winston Churchill the battle of France was now over, the battle of Britain was about to begin. 
Patxi: (...) but I am wondering if reported speech rules are not applied. (...) I mean the use of now with a past tense instead of using other time adverb like then for example.

The rules of reported speech are followed in the verb. He said "The battle of France is now over." The quote changes the verb to 'was' and that's fine. You're confused because you're thinking the time expression should also change, perhaps to 'then' but in this context that would be strange.
Neil. Learning English, British Council.

Thank you very much, Neil, for your help.

Dick Turpin, How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child!

Dick Turpin, Series 1, Episode 12. The Hostages

Sir John:  How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child! William Shakespeare, Hamlet, you know.
Jem: King Lear!
Sir John: If I say it's Hamlet, then it's Hamlet! You presumptuous young puppy!

(serpent = a snake, especially a large one - literary)
(hostage = someone who is kept as a prisoner by the enemy so that the other side will do what the enemy demands)

You can learn more about this saying here The Phrase Finder
And of course it's King Lear, Sir John! 

Saturday, 31 March 2012

Downton Abbey, Lavinia's funeral

Downton Abbey, Season 2, Episode 8.

Reverend: Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in sure and certain hope of the Resurrection to eternal life, through our Lord Jesus Christ; who shall change our vile body, that it may be like unto His Glorious Body, according to the mighty working, whereby He is able to subdue all things to Himself.
(shall is used instead of will to emphasize that something will definitely happen - it's an old fashioned, especially British English formal use) 

(unto = to, old fashioned)
(mighty = very strong and powerful)
(whereby = by means of which)
(subdue = to defeat or control using force)

Friday, 30 March 2012

Dick Turpin, The wish is father to the thought

Dick Turpin, Season 1, Episode 8. The Upright Man

Dick Turpin: To the upright man!
Tyson Sarney: Dick! By Heaven! Oh, thank God you're back! We thought you'd    been captured.
Dick Turpin: And the wish is often father to the thought.

(which means that the thought is born from the wish, because the "upright" man has betrayed Turpin and he's astonished to see him back) 

(upright: always behaving in an honest way)

To learn more about this saying do visit the english club related page.

Monday, 26 March 2012

Downton Abbey: When Mr. Bates is arrested

You are under arrest on the charge of wilful murder. 
You are not obliged to say anything unless you desire to do so. 
Whatever you say will be taken down in writing and may be given in evidence against you upon your trial.

Common error about making/doing business

Please do not say "make business", say "do business"
It's a common error

downton abbey: the end of second season

Matthew: Would you stay, if I ask you to? 
Mary:  Matthew, don't be mad. You know by yourself ...we ...carry more luggage.... And what about the late Mr. Pumoke? Won't he resurrect himself every time we argued?
Matthew:  No.
Mary:  You mean you've forgiven me.
Matthew:  No, I haven't forgiven you.
Mary:  Well, then?
Matthew:  I haven't forgiven you because I don't believe you need my forgiveness. You've lived your life and I've lived mine. Now it's time we lived them together.
Mary:  We've been on the edge so many times Matthew. Please don't take me there again unless you're sure.
Matthew:  I'm sure.
Mary:  And your vows to the memory of Lavinia?
Matthew:  I was wrong. I don't think she wants us to be sad. She was someone who never caused the ... of sorrow in her whole life.
Mary:  I agree.
Matthew:  And, will you...?
Mary:  You must say it properly. I won't answer unless you kneel down and everything.
Matthew:  Lady Mary Crowley, will you do me the honour of becoming my wife?
Mary:  Yes.