open a Pandora's box

open (a) Pandora's box

To begin or introduce something that leads to the discovery or discussion of many other problems. It seems like we've opened Pandora's box with this topic today. We've been getting hundreds of messages from listeners from around the country who have been affected by it. Trying to fix the bug opened a Pandora's box of other issues with the computer.
See also: box, open

open a Pandora's box

COMMON If someone or something opens a Pandora's box, they do something that unintentionally causes a lot of problems, which were not known about before. The virus can throw the entire body out of balance and open a Pandora's box of health problems. An invasion of the country would open a Pandora's box which may be impossible to close. Note: You can also describe something as a Pandora's box to say that it may cause a lot of problems. The rapidly developing technology is seen by some as a Pandora's box, with almost as many problems as benefits. Note: According to Roman mythology, Prometheus offended the gods and in revenge Jupiter ordered the creation of Pandora, the first woman. Jupiter gave Pandora a box which she was to offer to the man she married. Pandora married Prometheus's brother Epimethius. He opened the box and all the problems and wickedness that now trouble the world flew out and could never be put back.
See also: box, open
References in periodicals archive ?
He told the hearing: "There are very strong views in Parliament that there must be stronger limits on the power of the press and this would therefore in my mind open a Pandora's box.
Although the murky conflict anchors the play, Shanley uses it to open a Pandora's box of questions about blind faith--another brand of "don't ask, don't tell"--that has kept the Catholic hierarchy in gear for so long.
I firmly believe it is extremely dangerous to open a Pandora's box with respect to marriage.
But if the agency plans to regulate herbal supplements as drugs simply because they contain some of the same compounds found in drugs, ``It'll open a Pandora's box, because botanicals contain hundreds of compounds.