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      • Native Language:
      • Bulgarian
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      • Bulgaria
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    • Join Date: Sep 2007
    • Posts: 5,000

    The chickens have come home to roost.

    Dear teachers,

    Reading a publisher’s commentary yesterday I came upon a very eccentric expression (please see the expression in italics bellow).

    The financial meltdown is happening under the Republican watch, which is not surprising. Years of “let’s deregulate everything” philosophy and “leave it to the market’s invisible hands” was a recipe for mass corporate theft disguised as market capitalism.

    The chickens have come home to roost.

    Would you be kind enough to tell me your competent opinion concerning the following interpretations of the expression in question which I founded in a few sources?

    Every chicken comes back to their roost every night. It means the same as the saying "the apple dosn't fall far from the tree." All it means is that everyone comes back to something.

    The consequences of doing wrong always catch up with the wrongdoer, as in “Now that you're finally admitting your true age, no one believes you--chickens come home to roost. The fact that chickens usually come home to rest and sleep has long been known, but the idea was used figuratively only in 1809, when Robert Southey wrote, "Curses are like young chickens, they always come home to roost"

    If you say that chickens are coming home to roost, you mean that bad or silly things done in the past are beginning to cause problems.

    “There was too much greed in the past, and now the chickens are coming home to roost with crime and corruption soaring.“

    Thank you for your efforts.



    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434

    Re: The chickens have come home to roost.

    It is the second of your suggestions. The context indicates that.

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