Typically, the stories behind English idioms are somewhat bland compared to Chinese idioms, but the idiom for “turn a blind eye” is actually one that is interesting.
There was a British Vice-Admiral, Lord Horatio Nelson who had been blinded in one of his eyes early in his naval career. During a battle, his commander raised a flag from another ship giving him permission to withdraw if he chose to do so.
Nelson was much bolder than his commanding Admiral. He lifted his telescope to his blind eye, “withdrawal signal? I don’t see a withdrawal signal!” He went on to win the battle.
Examples: “The police in that part of town would turn a blind eye to the drug dealing because they were bribed.”
“There was a policy in the office that coworkers could not date, but the manager turned a blind eye to the relationship between Sherry and Manny.”
I hope you don’t turn a blind eye to these idioms, especially when you have a chance to write your own. Please give it a try.
Is there a Chinese idiom similar to “turn a blind eye“?