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Add Insult to Injury Meaning, Examples, Synonyms

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The phrase “add insult to injury” is an idiomatic expression that means to make a bad situation worse by saying or doing something that is hurtful or offensive in addition to the initial harm or offence that was already inflicted. 

It implies that not only has someone experienced an unfortunate or painful event, but they are then further aggravated or insulted by another person’s actions or words. 

It emphasizes the idea of compounding someone’s distress or suffering by piling on additional negativity.

Usage with Examples

The idiom “add insult to injury” is used in various contexts where someone wants to express the idea of worsening a negative situation. It can be used in both formal and informal settings, such as:

  • “She had already missed her flight, and to add insult to injury, the airline lost her luggage.”
  • “The car accident left him with a broken arm, and the insurance company’s refusal to cover his medical expenses added insult to injury.”
  • “He was already struggling financially, and his landlord raising the rent unexpectedly just added insult to injury.”

Also Read: Useful Idioms with Examples, Sentences and Meanings

Synonyms and Similar Words to the Add Insult to Injury 

Mentioned below are some synonyms and related words to add insult to injury:

  • Rub salt in the wound
  • Kick someone when they’re down
  • Pour gasoline on the fire
  • Twist the knife
  • Deepen the wound
  • Compound the misery
  • Aggravate the situation
  • Worsen the blow
  • Inflict further harm
  • Make matters worse

Add Insult to Injury Idiom Quiz

After losing his job, his colleagues threw a surprise farewell party for him. They _____________.

a) Showed sympathy and support

b) Celebrated his career achievements

c) Made the situation worse and more hurtful

Answer: c) Made the situation worse and more hurtful

Also Read: Idioms for IELTS


This was all about the idiom adding insult to injury meaning and examples. Hope you understood the concept where it’s used. For more such blogs, follow Leverage Edu.

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