Meaning of a fish out of water in english

A Fish Out of Water Meaning

Definition: A person who is uncomfortable in an unfamiliar situation.

This expression is commonly used khổng lồ describe the intense discomfort or lack of knowledge that a person has when he is trying to bởi something that he has never done, và that does not come naturally to lớn him.

This phrase can describe anyone who has been placed out of his natural habitat & does not know what to do.

Origin of A Fish Out of Water

This expression dates back to lớn the year 1483, when it was used by English writer Geoffrey Chaucer in his famous book, The Canterbury Tales, to lớn describe one of the characters who did not feel comfortable riding a horse.

Shipman: a huge man, uncouth; a master of vessel và knew all the ports; not ride well; lượt thích a fish out of water as sat on his horse.

Examples of A Fish Out of Water

Here is a case where two college friends use the idiom to discuss a class project on which they have been working.

Karl: This project is taking forever.

Frank: It’s getting faster, though. The more I learn about ancient Greece, the easier it gets.

Karl: Well, I feel lượt thích a fish out of water with this project. I know a lot about Roman history, but nearly nothing about Greek history.

Frank: That’s the point. If you already knew everything about it, you wouldn’t need khổng lồ be in school.

Karl: I guess you’re right.

In this example, two friends discuss an upcoming wedding.

Lily: I can’t wait for your wedding!

Grace: Actually, I’m thinking of eloping.

Lily: You can’t elope! You’ve always wanted a big wedding!

Grace: No, it was you who wanted a big wedding. I’ve never been comfortable being the center of attention. I’d be lượt thích a fish out of water. It’s better to lớn avoid the whole thing.

Lily: That’s not true. You’d have a great time! Well, actually, now that I think about it more, you’re probably right. You’re really bad in large groups of people.

More Examples

In the excerpt below, a doctor without government experience uses the expression lớn explain that if he did work in the government, it would be something very new for him.

In this news excerpt, the author describes a football player as a fish out of water because of how uncomfortable the player seems while playing.


The phrase fish out of water describes anyone who is outside of his comfort zone, or who feels awkward in a given situation.


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