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Previous research has furnished evidence that alliterative expressions (e.g. a slippery slope) are comparatively memorable for second language learners, at least when these expressions are attended to as decontextualized items (Lindstromberg and Boers, 2008a; Boers et al., 2012). The present study investigates whether alliteration renders lexical phrases comparatively memorable also when these phrases are encountered in texts read primarily with a focus on content. Fifty-four EFL students read a text adapted so as to include five instances of 12 idiomatic expressions. The results of surprise post-tests suggest that the alliterative phrases among these target expressions left significantly stronger memory traces than the non-alliterative ones, especially regarding the form or composition of the phrases.