dog in the manger

noun phrase

Definition of dog in the manger

: a person who selfishly withholds from others something useless to himself

First Known Use of dog in the manger

1573, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dog in the manger

from the fable of the dog who prevented an ox from eating hay which he did not want himself

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The first known use of dog in the manger was in 1573

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Cite this Entry

“Dog in the manger.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Nov. 2020.

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