Common idioms with take

Pick /take up the ball and run with it

This is an American idiom. It means take an idea or plan and develop it further.

  • It seems to be a good idea. I think we should pick up the ball and run with it.

Take your breath away

If something takes your breath away, you feel admiration because it is very beautiful or good.

  • Her beauty took my breath away.

Take the brunt of something

Suffer the worst part of something unpleasant

  • It was the innocent commuters who bore the brunt of the terrorist attack on the train.

Take somebody to the cleaner’s

If you take somebody to the cleaner’s you get a lot of money from them, usually by cheating them.

  • If you play poker with professional gamblers you can rest assured that they will take you to the cleaners. (= You will lose a lot of money.)

Take a crack at something / have a crack at something

Do something even if you are not certain that you will succeed.

  • He didn’t pass the TOEFL test in his first attempt, but he plans to have another crack at it next year.


Take up the cudgels for somebody or something / Take up the cudgels on behalf of somebody or something (argue strongly in support of someone or something)

  • Parents of the murdered woman have taken up the cudgels on her behalf.