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cloud-cuckoo land

A state or realm of unrealistic and idealized fancy, beyond the realms of possibility. Often preceded by "live/be in." He's always got some harebrained schemes on how to fix the world, all of them right out of cloud-cuckoo land! If Tom thinks he'll be able to live off his bad poetry, he's living in cloud-cuckoo land!
See also: land

be in cloud-cuckoo land

To believe in or be absorbed by unrealistic, idealized, and/or fanciful ideas that are beyond the realms of possibility. If Tom thinks he'll be able to live off his bad poetry, he's in cloud-cuckoo land!
See also: land

cuckoo in the nest

Someone in a group who is seen as different and ostracized by their peers. Since Sam always got good grades and never got in trouble, he was seen by his unruly peers as a cuckoo in the nest.
See also: cuckoo, nest

live in cloud-cuckoo land

To believe that unrealistic, idealized, and/or fanciful ideas will happen, when in fact they are beyond the realms of possibility. Tom thinks he'll be able to live off his bad poetry—he's living in cloud-cuckoo land if you ask me!
See also: land, live

cloud-cuckoo land

An idealized mythical domain, as in That idea about flying cars is straight out of cloud-cuckoo land. This expression originated as a translation from the Greek of Aristophanes' play The Birds, where it signifies the realm built by the birds to separate the gods from humankind. It came into use in the 1820s. During the 19th century it began to be used for a place of wildly fanciful dreams, unrealistic expectations, or the like, and it also acquired the connotation of "crazy" (from cuckoo, slang for "crazy" since about 1900). Also see la-la land; never-never land.
See also: land

cuckoo in the nest

an unwelcome intruder in a place or situation.
The female cuckoo often lays its eggs in other birds' nests. Once hatched, the cuckoo fledgling pushes the other birds' fledglings out of the nest.
See also: cuckoo, nest


and cuckoo
1. mod. unconscious. I socked him on the snoot and knocked him coo-coo.
2. mod. insane. How did I ever get involved in this cuckoo scheme, anyway?



Cloud Cuckoo Land

A nonexistent place of perfection, a utopia. This phrase comes from The Birds by the Greek dramatist Aristophanes, in which the birds decide to build a perfect city called Cloud Cuckoo City. Over the years “City” became “Land.”
See also: cloud, cuckoo, land
References in periodicals archive ?
The recently developed swarm-Intelligence based algorithm and bio-inspired algorithm such as cuckoo search (CS) developed by yang and deb (2009) [16].
It shows that all Welsh and Scottish-bred Cuckoos head south via Italy, whereas some English-bred Cuckoos take a western route through Spain.
It is the 15th time the species - a black-billed cuckoo - has been spotted in Britain.
The 24th event of its kind is expected to attract crowds from afar to savour the sight of a giant cuckoo being paraded through the streets and enjoy dozens of free entertainment acts.
So far, five cuckoos are resting and feeding in West Africa before they attempt to cross the Sahara, the satellite tracking shows, while two have already made it across the vast desert and are transmitting from Algeria and Spain.
Maybe the cuckoos know something that the South East have not yet discovered.
Another group in the Cheviot area heard two cuckoos.
THE sound of the cuckoo - a distinctive call that heralds the start of summer - was heard for the first time in the West Midlands this week.
Nearly all other species of parasitic cuckoos and parasitic honeyguides kill all the host young.
6 m), we identified habitat used by, or available to, cuckoos along the Middle Rio Grande and then classified the habitat as types following V.
The operation marks the the third year of a project by the BTO, aimed at better understanding the migration routes and African wintering grounds that cuckoos use.
The new research showed that this is another cuckoo trick: cuckoos combat reed warbler mobbing by coming in different guises.
IExactly a year ago, five bog standard British cuckoos were tagged with brand new satellite tracking technology and each bird was given its own online blog to keep the public updated on its progress.
The tracking project is the work of the British Trust of Ornithology (BTO) which has learned exactly where British cuckoos spend their winters as well as being surprised by how they get there.
As Peter Collins writes (May 8), there is indeed a fascinating project trying to understand what has led to a steep decline in the number of cuckoos coming to the UK in the summer.