SIGN UP

bird in the hand

Avatar Image
stephen.hove | 17:59 Sun 14th Sep 2003 | Phrases & Sayings
8 Answers
a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, apparently. but what does it mean.any ideas?

Answers

1 to 8 of 8rss feed

Best Answer

No best answer has yet been selected by stephen.hove. Once a best answer has been selected, it will be shown here.

For more on marking an answer as the "Best Answer", please visit our FAQ.
It basically means that actually having something yourself is worth more than there being more of it you can't have. Like if you have an amazing girlfriend who loves you dearly and is everything you could want - she's worth more than the 2 gorgeous girls that just walked past you in the street giving you the eye - as you already have your girlfriend. Thats a bit of a pants analogy - sorry, couldn't think of anything else. And I don't want to provoke any debates on women as possessions or anything, thats not what I meant either.
Question Author
yeah thats what i figured, but i dont know why it says 'worth', and why 2 in a bush,lol. and not that i want a bird in my hand either.
It refers to game birds - and I don't mean willing ladies either! - such as pheasants etc. Clearly, if you have one of these actually in your hand, it means you've shot it and it now has value (worth) as food. Compare that with the two other pheasants that might still be crouching in the undergrowth (bush)...they're of no use to you at all.
How dare you suggest we shoot pheasants!
it's about a safe bet or a risky venture and values; as QM says it with pheasants; you got one you got a certainty whereas the 2 in the bush are not worthless, they are potential..
and as is sometimes heard; 10 in the hand is worth 1 in Kate Bush. :-)
it's about a safe bet or a risky venture and values; as QM says it with pheasants; you got one you got a certainty whereas the 2 in the bush are not worthless, they are potential..
and as is sometimes heard; 10 in the hand is worth 1 in Kate Bush. :-)
Brewer's Dictionary says the ideat it exists in Russian. Translated it's " Don't promise the crane in the sky but give the tit in your hand" Er. Any offers? The image is of bird catchers not bird shooters.Birds were caught in nets or on sticky 'limed' twigs either for the table or as cage birds e.g. canaries and finches; they still are in some countries. Plainly the catcher can sell the one now, so that one is worth more than the two he might not catch . He should make the best of what he has, be satisfied and not abandon it on what might be a wild-goose chase ( sorry!)
Limed schmimed! The point is you've got the bird. The earliest uses of the phrase don't say either way, though I guess there was more liming, netting etc in the 1500s than shooting. Actually, the earliest versions refer to 'three in the wood' and 'ten in the sky', not 'two in the bush'. Bit of a problem liming birds in the sky! Cheers, Fred.

1 to 8 of 8rss feed

Do you know the answer?

bird in the hand

Answer Question >>