Idioms and Phrases in Marathi / different sentence formation in Marathi

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Like any language, Marathi has many phrases. Learning phrases, idioms, sayings is advanced part of language learning process. Dictionaries & Thesaurus are ideal resources to learn them. So it is not possible to replace them by one or two blogposts. But it is surely possible introduce to phrases. 

So in this lesson I am enlisting few phrases & peculiar sentences in which where senetence formation is different in Marathi compared to English. These were either discussed on facebook group or asked me over mail. 
I will keep updating this lesson as and when I found a good candidate. 

Please note that phrases are not translated literally their equivalents are given. 
It is assumed that reader knows basic grammar details about noun, pronouns, gender, tense etc. So s/he can take clue from meaning and make different sentences. 

1) To feel sleepy
The phrase "to feel sleepy" is said differently in Marathi. "X is feeling sleepy" is translated as if saying "Sleep is coming to X".
I am feeling sleepy -> Sleep is coming to me -> मला झोप येते आहे (malA jhop yete Ahe)

2) नाक खुपसणे (nAk khupasaNe) / लुडबुड करणे (luDabuD karaNe)->To meddle / To poke nose

3) जोखाडातून बाहेर येणे (jokahDAtUn bAher yeNe) -> To releive from burden

4) सावट येणे  (sAvaT yeNE) -> To come under evil 

5) झपाट्याने वाढणे (jhapATyAne vADhaNe)= To grow by leaps and bounds

6) जीवावर बेतणे (jIvAvar betaNe) -> To turn out to be fatal
रेल्वेच्या टपावर चढणे जीवावर बेतले (relvechyA TapAvar chaDhaNe jIvAvar betale) = Climbing the roof of the train turned out fatal

7) नवऱ्याने बायकोला टाकणे (navarxyAne bAyakolA TAkaNe) -> Husband to leave is wife or alienate from relationship

8) बाचाबाची होणे (bAchAbAchI hoNe) -> A verbal fight to take place

9) टप्पा गाठणे (TappA gAThaNe) -> To achieve a level/benchmark 

10) सूर गवसणे (sUr gavasaNe ) ->  to find form (as in cricket)

11) सर करणे (sar karaNe) -> To conquer

12) आवर घालणे (Avar ghAlaNe) -> To control

13) चारी मुंड्या चित करणे (chArI muMDyA chit karaNe) -> To give whitewash to rival ; To defeat (an opponent) easily by winning every game, point, etc.

14) रग उतरवणे (rag utaravaNe) -> Breaking one's ego or self boasting by defeating him

15) __ची समस्या भेडसावणे (samasyA bheDasAvaNe) -> To face problem of __

16) मुकाट्याने ऐकणे (mukATyAne aikaNe) -> To agree something without saying a word

17) संपुष्टात येणे (saMpuShTAt yeNe ) -> To come to and end

18) रंगू लागणे (raMgU lAgaNe) -> To become more interesting
e.g. कौशिक आल्यावर गप्पा रंगू लागल्या -> After Kaushik joined our chat become more interesting

19) __ची हमी देणे/घेणे (hamI deNe/gheNe) -> To give/take assurance of ___

20) सुकर होणे (sukar hoNe) -> To become easy

21) डच्चू देणे (DacchU deNe) -> To omit, To remove from an existing group)

22) घाम गाळणे (ghAm gALaNe) -> To work very heard

23) सापळ्यात अडकणे(sApaLyAt aDakaNe) -> To fall in trap

24) थैमान घालणे(thaimAn ghAlaNe) -> To throw tantrum, To cause widespread  destruction. 
e.g. प्लेगने देशभर थैमान घातले -> Plague caused causalities all over country

25) दणका देणे (daNakA deNe) -> To hit very strongly

26) दांडी मारणे(dAMDI mAraNe) -> To bunk (class, office)

27) वेठीस धरणे(veThIs dharaNe) -> To force some one to be in uncomfortable situation

28) चोंबडेपणा/चोमडेपणा करणे -> To be meddlesome/nosy, To share ones secret with others

29) पितळ उघडे पडणे (pitaL ughaDe paDaNe) -> Reality or hidden motives of someone getting exposed

30) काटा काढणे (kATA kADhaNe) -> To remove an obstacle that is stopping someone from wrong doing.

31) काट्याने काटा काढणे (kATyAne kATA kADhaNe) -> To do away with something/someone using other thing/person of same type.
e.g. पोलिसांनी ए-टोळिच्या लोकांच्या मदतीने ब-टोळीला संपवले. काट्याने काटा काढला -> Police took help of gang-A and finished gang-B

32) पातळी घसरणे(pAtaLI ghasaraNe) -> To degrade

33) खडाजंगी उडणे (khaDAjaMgI uDaNe) -> high tempered verbal clashing

34) अब्रूची लक्तरे वेशीवर टांगणे (abrUchI laktare veshIvar TAMgaNe) -> To defame publicly

35) थरकाप उडवणे (tharakAp uDavaNe) ->  To frighten so as to cause shivering

36) धडपड करणे(dhaDapaD karaNe) -> To try, To struggle

37) अंगावर काटा येणे(aMgAvar kATA yeNe) -> Goose bumping

28) गवसणी घालणे (gavasaNI ghAlaNe) -> To embrace
यशाला गवसणी घालणे (yashAlA gavasaNI ghAlaNe) ->to succeed/accomplish something.

आकाशाला गवसणी घालणे  (AkAshAlA gavasaNI ghAlaNe)  = to achieve something that is really very difficult or almost impossible to.

29)कोंबडा आरवणे(koMbaDA AravaNe) -> Cock crows in morning. Beginning of dawn

30) बोहल्यावर चढणे(bohalyAvar chaDhaNe) ->  To get married

31)लंपास करणे (laMpAs karaNe) -> To steal

32) खूळ लागणे (khUL lAgaNe) -> To behave a like a crazy/fanatic

33) काळजी (kALajI)  -> Worry
__ची काळजी वाटणे (kALajI vATaNe) -> To worry / To worry about
काळजी घेणे (kALajI gheNe) -> To take care
माझ्या तब्येतीची काळजी करू नकोस, तुझ्या अभ्यासाची काळजी घे
(mAjhyA tabyetIchI kALajI karU nakos, tujhyA abhyAsAchI kALajI ghe)
Do not worry about my health, take care of your studies 

34) तोंडाला पाणी सुटणे (toMDAlA pANI suTaNe)  -> Mouth to start watering

35) इंगा दाखवणे (iMgA dAkhavaNe) -> to show strength by teaching a proper lesson to whoever mess with you

36) कुणकुण लागणे (kuNakuN lAgaNe -> To get hint of something happening secretly. In Hindi भनक लगना (bhanak laganA)

37) कंबरडे मोडणे -> "कंबरडे" is slang word for waist. So it literally means break one waist. In short make some one disabled to carry out activity. e.g. 
माझ्या सैनिकांनी शत्रू सैन्याचे कंबरडे मोडले (mAjhyA sainikAMnI shatrU sainyAche kaMbaraDe moDale)
My soldiers devastated army of enemy 

38) कूस बदलणे (kUs badalaNe) -> While sleeping on a side to turn/change from one side to other.
In Hindi करवट बदलना(karavaT badalanA)

39) गंडा घालणे (gaMDA ghAlaNe) -> To cheat

40) भुरळ घालणे  / भुरळ पाडणे (bhuraL ghAlaNe  / bhuraL pADaNe) -> To enchant / To charm

Beauty of Indian sea shore enchanted me ->
भारताच्या समुद्रकिनाऱ्याच्या सौंदर्याने मला भुरळ पाडली/घातली
(bhAratAchyA samudrakinArxyAchyA sauMdaryAne malA bhuraL pADalI/ghAtalI)

41) छडा लावणे (ChaDA lAvaNe) -> To find out root cause

42) केसाला धक्का लागणे (kesAlA dhakkA lAgaNe) -> To get trifle harm

माझ्या मुलाच्या केसाला जरी धक्का लागला तरी मी तुझा जीव घेईन
(mAjhyA mulAchyA kesAlA jarI dhakkA lAgalA tarI mI tujhA jIv gheIn) ->
If my son is hurt even a bit, I will kill you.

43) शिवधनुष्य पेलणे (shivadhanuShy pelaNe) -> To carry out gigantic responsibility. 

शिवधनुष्य(shivadhanuShy) is name of Hindu mythological bow of Lord Shiva. It beyond anyone's capacity to handle this this bow. 

44) अक्कल पाजळणे (akkal pAjaLaNe) -> To try to be over smart, To give opinion/suggestion about things in which one is not expert

45) पोटात गोळा येणे (poTAt goLA yeNe) -> To get/have butterflies in your stomach, To be scared of something 

46) दणकून आपटणे (daNakUn ApaTaNe) -> To fall flat, To fail badly
Despite his heavy propaganda he failed in elections badly. -> 
भरपूर प्रचार करूनही तो निवडणुकीत दणकून आपटला 
(bharapUr prachAr karUnahI to nivaDaNukIt daNakUn ApaTalA)

47) गृहित धरणे (gRuhita dharaNe) -> To assume. To take for granted.

48) ___चा कळस (chA kaLas) -> height of ___
Height of nonsense -> आचरटपणाचा कळस (AcharaTapaNAchA kaLas) 

49) लोटांगण घालणे (loTAMgaN ghAlaNe) -> To prostrate

50) टोकाचे पाऊल उचलणे (TokAche pAUl uchalaNe) -> To take extreme steps.

Note :-  Right hand side of the blog shows "Blog Archive". Expand it fully to see whole list of posts to Learn Marathi. Learn Marathi grammar and many aspects Marathi language online


  1. Mr. Kaushik lele, what is the meaning of koshaat jaaun basne, bharkatun jaane.
    Please help.

    1. "kosh" means cocoon. So "koshaat jaaun basne" is like going into solitude or away from contacts.
      "bharakaTaNe" mean to go wayward ; to deviate from path.

      May I know your name please? Are you learning Marathi using my blog ?

    2. Yes Mr.lele, I learn from your blog infact I have learnt so many things your explanation is so helpful. I watch movies n serials in Marathi which helped me so much to learn the language. Some expressions I didn't understand so I thought of asking help from you. I m extremely thankful for your immediate reply. I have my list of doubts ready to ask you. I hope don't mind. 😀 My curiosity to learn the language is increasing everyday.

    3. Hi Learner (don't know your name yet :) )
      It is nice to know that you are learning Marathi & my blogs are useful to you. Thanks for appreciation. Such words really give me lot of satisfaction.

      I will be happy to help you further by answering your queries.

      I would like to know more about your Marathi learning and experience with my blog. Can you please drop me mail on

      Answering queries will also be easier in email.

      So, waiting for your mail. Mention in the mail that you have commented as "Marathi learner" so I can relate.

      - Kaushik