the wrong end of the stick

noun phrase

chiefly British, informal
: an incorrect understanding of something
You've got (hold of) the wrong end of the stick. He didn't push me; I fell.

Dictionary Entries Near the wrong end of the stick

Cite this Entry

“The wrong end of the stick.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/the%20wrong%20end%20of%20the%20stick. Accessed 26 Jan. 2023.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
Spell It

Hear a word and type it out. How many can you get right?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?

PLAY