here is a limit to everything. We can load the camel with lots of straw, but finally it will be too much and the camel's back will break. And it is only a single straw that breaks its back - the last straw. This can be applied to many things in life. People often say "That's the last straw!" when they will not accept any more of something. 

There are a Spanish phrase and a Chinese phrase which have a similar meaning to the subject proverb and they are "La gota que colmó el vaso” and 忍无可忍 respectively. 


  • You broke a lot of rules and I tried to put up with you. However, stealing money is the straw that broke the camel's back. You are fired! 
  • Rompiste muchas reglas y trato de aguantarte. Pero haberte robado el dinero es la gota que colmó el vaso. íEstás despedido! 
  • 你多次犯规,我已容忍你,但是挪用公款,我忍无可忍,我现在开除你。 

  • You have been rude to me all day. I've had it. That's the last straw. 
  • Has sido muy maleducado conmigo todo el día. ¡Me harté! !Esto es el colmo! 
  • 你一整天对我不客气,我受够,忍无可忍!
You are "burning the midnight oil" when you are working hard late into the night. Example: "I could see the light in your window last night. It looks like you have been burning the midnight oil." Before they had electric lamps, people used oil-burning lamps to read or work in the darkness at night. When you are working very hard until late at night you are "burning the midnight oil." "Has your son been working hard to prepare for his final exams?" Reply: "He sure has. He's been up each night burning the midnight oil".

Burning the midnight oil 的意思就是挑灯夜读,也就是我们平常所说的熬夜,开夜车。在英文中,这个用法也由来已久了,可以追溯到人们最初开始使用油灯的时候。如果在午夜时分燃烧灯油,那也就意味着熬夜苦读、看书了。例如:I have a big test tomorrow morning, so I plan to burn the midnight oil tonight.(因为明天我有一个重要的考试,所以我计划挑灯夜读了。)

No pain, no gain 没有付出没有收获

This expression is commonly used to encourage people to put in more efforts in order to achieve his goals. It is equivalent to the Chinese saying "世上无不劳而获的事" "一分耕耘,一分收获“. My friend Sara aptly puts it as a motto in her blog, I think, to remind herself to learn and study English hard.

This expression was made famous by actress Jane Fonda in 1982 when she produced a series of aerobics exercise videos. In these videos Fonda would use this catchphrase "No pain, no gain" for the concept of working out past the point of experiencing muscle aches. This phrase is often adopted by the physical fitness community. It expresses the belief that solid large muscle is the result of training hard and suffering sore muscles repeatedly. The more pains one gets the more muscles he can develop.

这一英语常用语通常用来鼓励人努力以实现目标,这相当中国人说  "世上无不劳而获的事", "一分耕耘,一分收获“       。我的好友 Sara 正好用它为她的博的座右铭,以提醒自己努力学习英语。