The phrase "once bitten, twice shy" implies that a negative experience can make a person wary of experiencing the same again. This idiom is often used to describe situations where one's past experiences influence their current decisions or behavior.
"Once bitten, twice shy" indicates a learned cautiousness after a negative event or experience.
The idiom "once bitten, twice shy" is used to convey a sense of caution or reluctance born out of a past negative or painful experience. If you're "once bitten, twice shy," you've probably learned a lesson from a previous event and are wary of repeating the same mistake.
Key aspects of the idiom's meaning include:
The phrase “Once bitten, twice shy” is a saying from the 19th century. During this time period, the word “bite” was used to describe any unpleasant experience. The phrase means that when someone has been hurt or betrayed once, they will be more cautious in the future.
"We have had one Reform Bill trick — we must not have another; once bitten twice shy is an old proverb - may it prove true; it remains for us to say, whether we shall be again defrauded. "
- The Republican A Magazine Advocating the Sovereignty of the People, 1848
Here are some examples of using the idiom in sentences:
The phrase "once bitten, twice shy" is often used in pop culture, including music, films, and literature.
Some examples include:
There are several alternative expressions that convey a similar meaning to "once bitten, twice shy."
Some of these include:
These alternatives can be used interchangeably depending on the context and the experience involved.
"Once bitten, twice shy" conveys learned caution or reluctance after a negative or hurtful experience.
It can be used to describe situations where a person has become cautious due to a past negative experience.
It is believed to have its origins in the 19th century and might be associated with an experience of getting bitten by an animal.
Yes, the phrase can be used in both formal and informal written communication, including essays, articles, emails, and text messages.
This phrase is widely recognized and understood across English-speaking regions, although equivalent expressions may exist in different dialects or cultures.
Yes, the phrase can be used to describe business decisions made cautiously due to past failures or negative experiences.
Yes, it can be used when discussing a group's actions or decisions, such as "the investors were once bitten, twice shy."
Yes, it can be used to express a lesson learned from a previous hurtful or negative experience.
While both phrases highlight learning from past mistakes, "once bitten, twice shy" focuses more on the caution adopted after a single hurtful incident, whereas the other expression deals with not letting oneself be fooled again after being deceived once.
Yes, it is frequently used in the context of relationships to describe being careful or guarded due to a previous painful experience.
To sum it up, the idiom "once bitten, twice shy" refers to the tendency to avoid repeating a negative experience. It encapsulates the human instinct to learn from past mistakes or unpleasant incidents and apply that knowledge to future actions or decisions.
Key aspects of the phrase:
Use this idiom when you want to highlight the wisdom gained from past experiences or convey the sense of caution adopted after a hurtful or disappointing incident.