stone’s throw: Idiom Meaning and Origin

What does ‘stone's throw’ mean?

The idiom "stone's throw" means a very short distance away.

Idiom Explorer


The idiom *stone's throw* has a literal meaning of a distance that can be covered by throwing a stone. It is commonly used to describe a very short distance.

One possible explanation for the metaphorical use of *stone's throw* is its association with proximity. The small distance that can be covered by throwing a stone suggests that two points are close to each other.

The idiom can also be used metaphorically to describe a close relationship between two people or groups. In this context, *stone's throw* is used to express a sense of familiarity and intimacy.

It is worth noting that the idiom *stone's throw* is predominantly used in informal contexts and may not be appropriate for formal or academic writing.

The idiom *stone's throw* has a literal meaning of a short distance that can be covered by throwing a stone.

It is commonly used metaphorically to describe proximity and closeness between two points or individuals.

Throw the stone a short distance near the location.

Despite its ancient origins, the idiom continues to be widely recognized and used in the English language.

Its versatility and simplicity make it a valuable addition to the idiomatic expressions in the English lexicon.

In addition to *stone's throw*, there are several other idioms that are related to distance or closeness.

One such idiom is *spitting distance*. This phrase is used to describe a distance that is so close that one could spit and reach the target. It is often used to emphasize how close two points or objects are to each other. For example, "They live in neighboring houses, just a spitting distance apart."

Another related idiom is *short strokes*. This phrase is used to describe a method of completing a task or achieving a goal in small, manageable steps. It suggests that breaking a task down into smaller parts can make it easier to accomplish. For example, "If you want to write a book, take it in short strokes and write a little bit every day."

The idiom *snatch the pebble* is another phrase related to distance. It comes from the television show "Kung Fu" and is used to describe a test or challenge that requires great precision and skill. The phrase references a scene where the main character snatches a pebble out of his master's hand, demonstrating his mastery of the martial arts. It is often used to encourage someone to reach for a difficult goal or challenge themselves to improve.

Lastly, the idiom *sticks and stones* is used to convey the idea that words cannot harm or hurt someone. It suggests that verbal insults or criticism should be ignored or brushed off. The full phrase is "sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me." It is often used as a reminder to not let negative words or comments have a lasting impact.

Example usage


1. Example: "The grocery store is just a stone's throw away from my house." In this example, the idiom "stone's throw" is used to indicate that the distance between the speaker's house and the grocery store is very short.

2. Example: "The two houses are a stone's throw from each other." Here, the idiom "stone's throw" implies that the distance between the two houses is very close or within a short walking distance.

3. Example: "I can see the beach from my window, it's just a stone's throw." This sentence uses the idiom "stone's throw" to express that the beach is located at a very close proximity to the speaker's window.

More "Location" idioms