Are you an organized person? Do you prefer to complete tasks well in advance or do you tend to wait until the last minute to do things? If you’re the second type of person, you probably know what it’s like to burn the midnight oil. This means that you stay up late at night to work, perhaps to study for an exam or to complete a project.
Watch the video below for more examples of how to use today’s expression.
So, burning the midnight oil. Isn’t that a little dangerous? No! To burn the midnight oil just means to stay up late at night, working on something urgent.
Let’s run through some common examples using this phrase.
- My essay is due tomorrow, so I’ll be burning the midnight oil tonight!
- I tried to burn the midnight oil last night, but it didn’t go to plan!
- A: You look shattered – are you OK?
- B: Yeah, I’m fine – I was just burning the midnight oil last night. I had an important project due this morning.
So, there you have it: burn the midnight oil. When was the last time you had to burn the midnight oil? Let us know by leaving a comment on our Facebook page.
Try to write some sentences using today’s expression.
- When was the last time you needed to stay up all night to work or study?
- If a friend were staying up late to study every night for exams, what advice would you give him or her?
- What would you do if your employer called you in the evening and told you that he needed you to give an urgent presentation to buyers in the morning?
Sink your teeth into more English idioms in our lesson archives.