bone in her teeth: Idiom Meaning and Origin

What does ‘bone in her teeth’ mean?

Bone in her teeth: When someone has a bone in her teeth, it means she is determined and refuses to give up on something or a strong motivation to pursue an idea or goal.

Idiom Explorer

Cracking the Mystery

The idiom "bone in her teeth" is a phrase commonly used in English Language, particularly in American English. It is often used to describe an individual who is determined, persistent, and unwilling to let go of a particular idea, goal, or task. The idiom conveys the image of someone metaphorically clenching onto a bone in their teeth, refusing to release it.

The idiom can be traced back to the early 19th century and is believed to have originated from the world of horse racing. During races, a horse that would bite down on the bit between its teeth would not only show resistance but also demonstrate fierce determination to win. This concept of a horse refusing to release the bit became synonymous with someone who held steadfast to a pursuit or objective.

The phrase "bone in her teeth" gained popularity over time and made its way into the realm of everyday idiomatic speech. It is often used in contexts where a person is unwilling to back down, even when faced with obstacles or opposition. The idiom suggests a tenacious and unwavering attitude, where one continues to pursue their objectives despite challenges or setbacks.

In contemporary usage, the idiom "bone in her teeth" can be found in various contexts, including politics, business, sports, and personal relationships. It is often employed to describe individuals who possess a resolute and unyielding approach towards their goals. More importantly, the idiom conveys a strong sense of determination and the refusal to be deterred by obstacles or criticism.

It is worth noting that the idiom does not imply stubbornness or obstinacy in a negative sense. Rather, it emphasizes the admirable quality of perseverance and the willingness to fight for what one wants. In many cases, individuals who have a "bone in their teeth" are often admired for their determination and seen as driven and focused.

My dentist is concerned about my teeth and gums.

Interestingly, the idiom can also be used in a metaphorical sense beyond the context of pursuing a goal. It can describe a person's dogged pursuit of truth, justice, or a particular cause. In such instances, the idiom captures the essence of unwavering commitment and a refusal to let go of what one believes to be right or just.

The idiom "bone in her teeth" is related to several other idioms, including "dig in one's heels", "bone in the throat", "pull teeth", and "bone hard".

"Dig in one's heels" is a similar idiom that refers to a person's refusal to move or change their stance on a particular issue. It conveys a sense of obstinacy and determination, much like having a bone in one's teeth. Both idioms highlight the tenacious and unyielding nature of individuals who are unwilling to back down.

"Bone in the throat" is another idiom related to having a bone stuck in one's teeth. It refers to a situation or problem that is difficult to overcome or let go of. Just as a bone in the throat can cause discomfort and hinder swallowing, a difficult situation can be emotionally or mentally challenging to deal with.

"Pull teeth" is yet another idiom that shares similarities with having a bone in one's teeth. It means to extract information or obtain something through great effort or difficulty. Similar to the determination required to grip onto a bone in one's teeth, pulling teeth implies the need for persistence and perseverance in achieving a desired outcome.

"Bone hard" is an idiom that describes something extremely difficult or stubborn. It relates to the unwavering determination associated with having a bone in one's teeth. Both idioms underscore the challenging and unyielding nature of certain situations or individuals.

Overall, the idiom "bone in her teeth" has become a widely used phrase in the English language, conveying the concept of relentless determination and an unwillingness to surrender. It offers a vivid image of a dog gripping onto a bone in its teeth, symbolizing someone who tenaciously clings to their objectives or beliefs. Whether in the realm of sports, politics, or everyday life, the idiom captures a sense of grit and resilience, leaving us to ponder the inspiring power of unwavering determination.

Example usage

Examples of how the idiom "bone in her teeth" can be used in a sentence are: 1. "Ever since she found out about the corruption, she has had a bone in her teeth and won't rest until justice is served." 2. "Once she sets her mind on a goal, she gets a bone in her teeth and becomes unstoppable." 3. "He knew he had a bone in his teeth when he made it his mission to expose the truth behind the company's unethical practices."

"Bone in her teeth" is an idiom that is used to describe someone who is determined and persistent in pursuing a particular goal or objective. The phrase indicates that the person is unwilling to let go or back down, similar to a dog with a bone firmly clenched in its teeth. When someone has a "bone in her teeth," it means they have a strong motivation or drive to accomplish something and will not be easily dissuaded or distracted. This idiom is often used to convey a sense of determination and tenacity.

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