Crumbs of Knowledge – Hunting Idioms

We’ve a fair few phrases and sayings related to the hunting tradition.  Here are a few of my favourites.  If you know anymore, please add them to the comments below.


“To go to ground” – To hide where you won’t be easily found (like a hunted fox might).


Person 1: “Have you spoken to Greg after he embarrassed himself at the pub the other night?”

Person 2: “No, he’s gone to ground.  He must be ashamed.”


“To shoot someone’s fox” – to undermine or ruin someone’s plan by doing it before them.


Person 1: “Did you tell your boss about your idea to increase sales?”

Person 2: “I didn’t get a chance, my colleague came up with a similar plan first, and shot my fox.”


“You can’t run with the hare, and hunt with the hounds” – You can’t do (or think) two opposing things at the same time.


Person 1: “My sister keeps buying new things, but says she wants to save money for a down-payment on a house.”

Person 2: “She wants to run with the hare, and hunt with the hounds, but it’s just not possible.”


“Fair game” – someone who is a reasonable target object for criticism or attack.


Person 1: “I thought they were attacking the Prime Minister unfairly in the interview.”

Person 2: “Really?  Considering it’s mostly her fault, I’d say she’s fair game.”


“To hound someone out” – To force someone to leave a place or position.


Person 1: “Did you hear that Jenny’s moved to another department?”

Person 2: “Apparently she didn’t want to leave, but was hounded out by her colleagues.”


“To lose the scent” – to no longer be able or keen to pursue or attack someone.


Person 1: “I’ve not seen anything in the local news about the woman down the road who won the lottery the other day.”

Person 2: “No, me neither.  There were reporters everywhere last week, but they seem to have lost the scent now.”


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  1. Hello, I would like to thank you guys for posting this wonderful post about English Idioms.
    I loved to learn them all.
    Please add more idioms time to time in future.
    Thank you!

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