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neither fish, flesh, nor fowl

Neither one thing nor another; not belonging to any suitable class or description; not recognizable or characteristic of any one particular thing. We require a solution that directly deals with the issue at hand, but what the chancellor has put forward is, to my mind, neither fish, flesh nor fowl.
See also: fowl, neither, nor

run foul of (someone or something)

To be in severe disagreement, trouble, or difficulty with someone or something; to be at odds with someone or something, especially due to disobeying rules or laws. Always look into the laws of any place you visit, or you may end up unwittingly running foul of the local police. Ms. Banks has run foul of this university for the last time. She is no longer welcome here!
See also: foul, of, run

be neither fish nor fowl

To be difficult to describe or definitively categorize. What genre of music is this? It's neither fish nor fowl to me.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl

Neither one thing nor another; not belonging to any suitable class or description; not recognizable or characteristic of any one particular thing. We require a solution that directly deals with the issue at hand, but the proposal that has been put forward is, to my mind, neither fish nor fowl.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl

Cliché not any recognizable thing. The car that they drove up in was neither fish nor fowl. It must have been made out of spare parts. This proposal is neither fish nor fowl. I can't tell what you're proposing.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl

Also, neither fish nor flesh; neither fish, flesh, nor fowl. Not one or the other, not something fitting any category under discussion. For example, They felt he was neither fish nor fowl-not qualified to lead the department, yet not appropriate to work as a staff member either . This expression appeared in slightly different form in John Heywood's 1546 proverb collection ("Neither fish, nor flesh, nor good red herring") and is thought to allude to food for monks ( fish, because they abstained from meat), for the people ( flesh, or meat), and for the poor ( red herring, a very cheap fish).
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl

If something or someone is neither fish nor fowl, they are difficult to identify or understand, because they seem partly like one thing and partly like another. Brunel's vessel was neither fish nor fowl: a passenger liner too ugly and dirty to offer much beyond novelty value. In the American sports press, this athlete is neither fish nor fowl, neither American nor entirely foreign. Note: People occasionally replace fish with flesh. She didn't look one of anything to Oatsie, neither flesh nor fowl, neither idiot nor intellectual. Note: `Fowl' is an old-fashioned word for a hen or other bird.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl (nor good red herring)

of indefinite character and difficult to identify or classify.
This expression arose with reference to dietary laws formerly laid down by the Church during periods of fasting or abstinence.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither ˌfish nor ˈfowl

neither one thing nor another: Graduate teaching assistants are neither fish nor fowl, neither completely students nor teachers.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl

Having no specific characteristics; indefinite.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor

neither fish nor fowl

Having no specific characteristics or category, not easily characterized. The phrase, which was originally “neither fish nor flesh nor fowl,” appeared in slightly different form in a 16th-century collection of proverbs as “neither fish, nor flesh, nor good red herring”: fish for monks who ate no meat, flesh for people who could afford meat, and cheap herring for the poor. The phrase is reminiscent of the old riddle: What is neither fish nor flesh, feathers nor bone/but still has fingers and thumbs of its own? Answer: a glove.
See also: fish, fowl, neither, nor
References in periodicals archive ?
Fowler spent the week leading up to Christmas getting in the holiday spirit, stopping by the Golden Circle Senior Center in Harrisburg for their annual Christmas party.
First round: Barry Tinker (3) Longwood 8 Richard Taylor (4) Shepley 21; Jordan Fernyhough (6) Crosland Moor 21 Graham Woodruff (4) Linthwaite C&B 17; Mark Fletcher (3) Waterloo 17 Paddy Conneely (6) Lockwood Con 21; Carl Allen (4) Lindley BC 21 David Peacock (5) Milnsbridge BC 19, Stuart Smart (4) Waterloo 10 Thomas Fowler (4) Crosland Moor 21; Steven Gledhill (4) Longwood 16 Guy Beaumont (4) Crosland Moor 21; Gareth Metcalf (3) Slaithwaite 21 Richard Brook (4) Almondbury BC 20; Jamie Hulley (4) Milnsbridge BC 19 Sean Price (5) Crosland Moor 21.
Fowler saved his best for last, closing Sunday with a 5-under 67 and not one bogey on his card.
Fowler was elected to the PVA Executive Committee and had served as a national vice president since 2011, a role he described as "very rewarding.
The villain, if there is one, in Laing's biography of Fowler is, of course, Adrian "Cap" Anson.
He searched their archives and found references to Ann and Mary Fowler.
ASU-Newport will ask the ASU board of trustees to name the building for the Fowler family.
Fowler initially denied two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a dog and two counts of administering drugs to a dog knowing it to be poisonous or injurious, but he changed his plea to guilty.
For the most part, Fowler succeeds in his task, forcing his readers to rethink the guiding assumptions that have held sway over the popular and academic study of British youth culture.
THE AUTHOR OF MODERN English Usage, Henry Watson Fowler, was, as one might expect of the author of a 700-plus-page English usage guide, idiosyncratic.
It was repeated interviews with detectives who were "badgering" Fowler while he was serving time in a state prison for an unrelated crime, he said, that prompted him to tell U.
Cardiff City remained diplomatic and only said: "Robbie Fowler was out of contract and free to make his own decision.
T hat was before Fowler yesterday abruptly announced he was walking away from Cardiff City to join Blackburn, so you can just imagine how much more ferocious the insults have become since.
Carla Fowler has faithfully served the corrections field for more than 15 years, growing up she never intended to go down that career path.
Robbie Fowler is undergoing treatment while he sleeps in a bid to save his Cardiff City career.