A new lease on life

A new lease on life is an idiom that has been in use since the 1800s. We will examine the meaning of the idiom a new lease on life, where it came from, and some examples of its idiomatic usage in sentences.

A new lease on life is an idiom that means a chance to start over, the opportunity to renew one’s happiness, success, or attitude. Someone who has a new lease on life has a fresh start and is optimistic. The expression a new lease on life came into use in the early 1800s and is a reference to entering into a leasing contract. In the idiom’s early use, a new lease on life only pertained to a person’s health. By the second half of the 1800s, a new lease on life came to mean any new opportunity or fresh beginning. The phrase is sometimes rendered in British English as a new lease of life.

Examples

He was listed as an organ donor, and within hours, Jeff was among the four people who were granted a new lease on life thanks to Bryan’s generosity. (People Magazine)

The project itself demonstrates how our old or historical monuments can be given a new lease on life. (The Philippine Star)

“Cops,” meanwhile, got a new lease on life in 2013 when Spike TV ordered new episodes and paired them with repeats. (The Jerusalem Post)

On Friday (June 26), Raju Sarker walked out of Tan Tock Seng Hospital; a father given a new lease of life. (The Daily Star)

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