Idiom of the Week: Double-Edged Sword


Meaning: Something that has significant advantages and disadvantages.


Having a car in New York is a double-edged sword. It’s much easier to get out of the city, but it’s really difficult sometimes to find a place to park.

Cell phones are a double-edged sword – they’re convenient, but they can cause a lot fo disruptions.

I asked him if he recommended getting married. “It’s a double-edged sword,” he said.

Pop Quiz:

An electronic dictionary is a double-edged sword when it comes to learning English because…

A. it can help you find the definitions of words.

B. it’s expensive.

C. it’s easy to use, but sometimes you rely on it too much.

Click on “Continue reading” to see the correct answer:

The correct answer is C. When it comes to studying English, electronic dictionaries have definite advantages and disadvantages. One disadvantage is that students often use them in class and then miss something important. That’s why we ask students to leave their electronic dictionaries at home – if you want to know what a word means, just ask your teacher!

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