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Why do we say 'Beat about the Bush'?

Average: 1.9 (205 votes)


No. Not that Bush.

If someone is not clear in what they are saying and says things in an indirect manner making it difficult to understand what they mean they are 'beating about the bush'. People tend to 'beat about the bush' when trying to avoid talking about an embarrassing or difficult topic. This idiom came about through bird hunting when participants used to beat bushes to stir the birds from them while others caught them in nets. So, 'beating about the bush' was the start of the actual capture, but not the end result.

'Explain your point to me more clearly and stop beating around the bush.'

'Tell me exactly what happend and don't beat around the bush.'