Not a dicky-bird


      • no response or sound
        To indicate complete silence or lack of any response or noise

      • nothing at all
        To convey the absence of anything or everything

    Examples of Not a dicky-bird

    • The forest was as silent as a gravestone on a cold winter's night, not a dicky-bird could be heard chirping.

      This idiom, "not a dicky-bird," is used to describe an absolute silence or complete lack of sound. "Dicky-bird" is a British term for a common bird, the house sparrow, so "not a dicky-bird" implies that not even a single sparrow can be heard, indicating deafening silence.

    • The conference room was as quiet as an empty library, not a dicky-bird could be heard whispering.

      Similar to the previous example, this idiomatic expression emphasizes the lack of sound in an enclosed space. The first idiom compares the silence to a cold winter's night, while the second one compares it to an empty library, where complete silence is expected.

    • The hearing tests were performed in a soundproof room, not a dicky-bird could be heard rustling in the bag.

      This idiomatic expression compares absolute silence to the sound made by a bird's feathers rustling inside a bag. This is a challenging comparison to comprehend, but it emphasizes the profound level of silence that one could hear in the soundproof room.

    • The concert hall was as mute as a stiff after a long night, not a dicky-bird could be heard singing.

      This idiomatic expression compares silence to an unnaturally quiet person who suddenly wakes up in the morning. The comparison highlights the shockingly still atmosphere in the concert hall, making it a fitting description for an incredibly quiet environment.

    • The meeting room was as silent as a graveyard at midnight - not a dicky-bird could be heard.

      This example illustrates the use of the idiom in a descriptive sentence. The meeting room is so quiet that not even the slightest sound of a bird can be heard.

    • We waited for hours in the woods, but not a dicky-bird moved.

      This example demonstrates the idiom in an action-oriented sentence. The speaker and their companions have been waiting in the woods for a long time, but not even a bird has made any noise or movements.

    • The library was shrouded in a hush, not a dicky-bird broke the silence.

      Here, the idiom is used to convey the peaceful and quiet atmosphere of a library. Even in such a quiet environment, not a bird can be heard, indicating absolute silence.

    • The concert hall was eerily silent, not a dicky-bird dared to chirp or sing.

      This example uses the idiom in a dramatic tone to describe the extreme stillness and silence in a concert hall, where even the birds are too afraid to make any sounds.


    The idiom "not a dicky-bird" is used to convey either complete silence or the absence of anything. It can be used in various situations to emphasize the lack of response or any kind of activity.

    Origin of "Not a dicky-bird"

    The origin of the idiom "not a dicky-bird" is a bit unclear, but it is believed to have originated in British English, possibly in the early 20th century. The term "dicky-bird" is a colloquial term for a small bird, and the idiom likely originated from the observation that birds are often quiet when they are not present or when there is no response from them. Over time, the idiom has become a common way to express the absence of any sound or response in everyday language.