Meaning of ‘By the Book’ – English Idioms
What does ‘by the book’ mean?
Watch this short video to learn a simple trick about “by the book” meaning and how we can use this idiom.
When you are at work, do you do things “by the book?”
The idiom “by the book” means that you are doing things exactly according to the rules.
You are obeying all of the rules.
So, a lot of the time people like to not do all the rules,
because some of the rules are difficult, or some of the rules do not seem necessary.
But if a person does everything “by the book” that means they obey all of the rules.
They do not select a rule to not do, they do all of them.
Okay, so we can use this idiom “by the book” like that, or we can say,
“To do it by the book, to do things by the book,” for example.
Normally, this is used in the context of a company, or your job, or maybe school,
or some kind of official organization.
We would not typically say this when we’re talking about our personal lives, for example,
although there may be some cases when you could do that.
So, if you do things “by the book” it means that you are very strict
and that you think it’s very important to follow all of the rules or all of the procedures for a certain task or job and so on.
So, here are a couple example sentences:
“My boss is really strict. He always does things by the book.”
“I have to be careful to follow all of the procedures,
because my supervisor always wants me to do things by the book.”
“Oh, you finished the task! Perfect. Did you do everything by the book?”
All right, “by the book.”
To follow all of the rules, all of the procedures,
when you’re doing a task or in general, the way that you behave at work, for example.
So, I hope that you learned something new and have a great day.
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