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A carefree time of youthful innocence, ingenuousness, and inexperience. A variant of the more common "salad days," which itself is taken from Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra. I had a few encounters with truly romantic love back in my salad years, before I graduated; now, however, I think love is largely an elaborate delusion. Whenever I ask my grandfather the meaning of a word I hear on TV, he always laughs and says he'll tell me when I'm no longer in my salad years.
rude slang A disparaging term for a homosexual man (as is "fruit").
in one's salad days
Fig. in one's youth. (Usually formal or literary. Comparing the greenness of a salad with the greenness, or freshness and inexperience, of youth.) I recall the joys I experienced on school vacations in my salad days. In our salad days, we were apt to get into all sorts of mischief on the weekends.
toss a salad
to mix various salad ingredients together. The chef tossed the salad. I tossed the salad just before my guests arrived.
your salad days(old-fashioned)
the time when you were young and had little experience of life But that was in my salad days, before I got married and had children.
The time of youth, innocence, and inexperience, as in Back in our salad days we went anywhere at night, never thinking about whether it was safe or not . This expression, alluding to the greenness of inexperience, was probably invented by Shakespeare in Antony and Cleopatra (1:5), when Cleopatra, now enamored of Antony, speaks of her early admiration for Julius Caesar as foolish: "My salad days, when I was green in judgment, cold in blood."
A time of youthful inexperience and carefree pleasures, usually looked back on with nostalgia. The phrase came from Shakespeare's Anthony and Cleopatra, in which the Queen of the Nile reflected on “My salad days / When I was green in judgment: cold in blood . . .”