English is FUNtastic
Saturday, 8 July 2017
Idiom: Bigger fish to fry / other fish to fry
Having something more important to do
Roger ignored the fact that his socks were mismatched. He had bigger fish to fry. Like the fact that he couldn’t find his trousers.
Bigger fish to fry
is interchangeable with the often used
other fish to fry
, and has been in common usage for about 400 years. Why fish are involved is a mystery lost to time.
In German, Spanish, and Italian, there are similar phrases. They simply translate to ‘having other things to do’. The French, not content with cooking sea creatures, have ‘ many other dogs to whip’.
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