birthright

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sell (one's) birthright for a mess of pottage

To exchange something of great, important, or fundamental value for some financial gain that proves to be of little, trivial, or no value but which appears to be attractive or valuable on first reckoning. An allusion to Esau in Genesis 25:29–32, who sells to Jacob his birthright to his family's estate for a bowl of lentil stew (pottage). If we allow our obsession with job creation to undermine the health of the environment, humanity will ultimately end up selling its birthright for a mess of pottage.
See also: birthright, mess, of, pottage, sell

sell (one's) birthright for a bowl of soup

To exchange something of great, important, or fundamental value for some financial gain that proves to be of little, trivial, or no value but which appears to be attractive or valuable on first reckoning. (A variant of "sell one's birthright for a mess of pottage," an allusion to Esau in Genesis 25:29–32, who sells to Jacob his birthright to his family's estate for a bowl of lentil stew (pottage).) If we allow our obsession with job creation to undermine the health of the environment, humanity will ultimately end up selling its birthright for a bowl of soup.
See also: birthright, bowl, of, sell, soup
References in classic literature ?
He had held frequent communion with the traders and troops of the Canadas, and the intercourse had unsettled many of those wild opinions which were his birthright, without perhaps substituting any others of a nature sufficiently definite to be profitable.
But he who sold his birthright for a mess of pottage existed, and Judas Iscariot existed, and Castlereagh existed, and this man exists
Mrs Gowan with a gentle melancholy upon her, occasioned by her son's being reduced to court the swinish public as a follower of the low Arts, instead of asserting his birthright and putting a ring through its nose as an acknowledged Barnacle, headed the conversation at dinner on the evil days.
A: Barrister Elizabeth Prochaska, founder of Birthrights, a new legal advice organisation protecting women''s rights in childbirth, says: You have the right to decide where you give birth.
EXPERT: Barrister Elizabeth Prochaska, founder of Birthrights a legal advice organisation protecting women''s rights in childbirth
Otherwise, Perez (while he's alive), Daniel Auteuil, Fabrice Luchini and Philippe Noiret all seem to be having a high old time cavorting around 18th-century France in the interests of love, loyalty, birthrights and fencing.
Lagardere finally encounters his opportunity to make matters right and restore Aurore's birthright.
Having few computers and modems they sold their Internet birthrights for millions to Western entrepreneurs.
They are the birthrights of people everywhere,'' Clinton said.
Jacob demanded that Esau sell his birthright for the food, and Esau complied, contending it had little value if he was on the verge of starvation.
Yet some of the poorest and neediest Americans are among the largest groups of Americans who have forsaken this birthright.