Coin a phrase


      • invent a clever or catchy phrase
        To come up with a new and memorable saying or expression that captures a particular idea or concept.

      • overuse or repeat a phrase
        To use a phrase or saying so often that it becomes clichéd or loses its original meaning and impact.

    Examples of Coin a phrase


      The idiom "coin a phrase" has two distinct meanings. The first one refers to creating a new and clever saying, while the second one is about overusing an existing phrase.

      In the first meaning, "coin" is being used as a verb that means to invent or create something. The phrase is often used sarcastically, as coming up with a truly original and memorable phrase is not an easy task. It also implies that the phrase is being used for the first time and will become popular and widely known.

      The second meaning is more negative, as it suggests that the phrase being used is no longer effective or impactful. It could also imply that the person using the phrase is unoriginal or lacks creativity.

      Origin of "Coin a phrase"

      The origin of this idiom is uncertain, but it is believed to have originated in the 20th century. The word "coin" has been used in idiomatic expressions to mean "create" or "invent" since the 17th century, so it is possible that this phrase evolved from that usage.

      One theory suggests that the phrase may have originated in the advertising industry, where catchy slogans and phrases are often created to promote products or services. Another theory points to the literary world, where authors are constantly trying to come up with new and original phrases to make their writing stand out.

      Regardless of its origin, "coin a phrase" has become a popular idiom used in everyday language to describe the act of creating or overusing a phrase.