cry wolf


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cry wolf

Fig. to cry or complain about something when nothing is really wrong. (From the story wherein a child sounds the alarm frequently about a wolf when there is no wolf, only to be ignored when there actually is a wolf.) Pay no attention. She's just crying wolf again. Don't cry wolf too often. No one will come.
See also: cry, wolf

cry wolf

to ask for help when you do not need it Growers who cry wolf today about the lack of water will probably be selling their vegetables in a few months. He said the mayor's grim predictions about what would happen if the bill isn't passed amounted to crying wolf.
Etymology: from the children's story “The Boy Who Cried Wolf,” in which a boy who was watching some sheep called for help when there was no wolf (wild animal) attacking them and then got no help when a wolf did attack the sheep because no one believed him
See also: cry, wolf

cry wolf

to ask for help when you do not need it, with the result that no one believes you when help is necessary She had repeatedly rung the police for trivial reasons and perhaps she had cried wolf too often.
See cry heart out, ask for the moon
See also: cry, wolf

cry wolf

Raise a false alarm, as in Helen's always crying wolf about attempted break-ins, but the police can never find any evidence . This term comes from the tale about a young shepherd watching his flock who, lonely and fearful, called for help by shouting "Wolf!" After people came to his aid several times and saw no wolf, they ignored his cries when a wolf actually attacked his sheep. The tale appeared in a translation of Aesop's fables by Roger L'Estrange (1692), and the expression has been applied to any false alarm since the mid-1800s.
See also: cry, wolf

cry wolf

To raise a false alarm.
See also: cry, wolf

cry wolf

To raise a false alarm, to ask for assistance when you don't need it, and by extension, to exaggerate or lie. The phrase comes from the Aesop fable, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf,” in which a young shepherd found it amusing to make villagers think a wolf is attacking his flock. When they came to his rescue, they learned of the false alarm. However, when a wolf actually menaced the flock, the villagers disregarded the shepherd's calls for help, and the wolf ate the flock (and in some versions the boy). The moral: “Even when liars tell the truth, they are never believed."
See also: cry, wolf
References in periodicals archive ?
Bawdy, irreverent, bizarre and very funny, Cry Wolf is riotous entertainment not to miss.
I bet they could come up with a hundred better lines than Cry Wolf managed.
Viewing figures for Cry Wolf, set in a London GP surgery, fell from 7.
School students find themselves preyed on by a killer in Cry Wolf.
You can only cry wolf so many times that companies are going to be forced out of state and people can't afford insurance.
The 32-year-old has gone from strength to strength since the late 90s when a string of sitcoms including The Fitz and medical comedy flop Cry Wolf threatened to sideline her career.
We are not going through all of this to cry wolf,'' Rice said.
But they have been known to cry wolf so if anything goes wrong they can say they warned everyone.
He also managed wolves for the movie "Never Cry Wolf.