sour grapes


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sour grapes

Fig. something that one cannot have and so disparages as if it were never desirable. of course you want to buy this expensive jacket. Criticizing it is just sour grapes, but you still really want it.
See also: grape, sour

sour grapes

Disparaging what one cannot obtain, as in The losers' scorn for the award is pure sour grapes. This expression alludes to the Greek writer Aesop's famous fable about a fox that cannot reach some grapes on a high vine and announces that they are sour. In English the fable was first recorded in William Caxton's 1484 translation, "The fox said these raisins be sour."
See also: grape, sour

sour grapes

COMMON If you describe someone's attitude as sour grapes, you mean that they are jealous of another person's success and show this jealousy by criticizing that person. These accusations have been going on for some time now, but it is just sour grapes. The government says that Mr Fedorov's criticisms are mere sour grapes. Note: In one of Aesop's fables (= traditional stories, usually with a moral), a fox tries several times unsuccessfully to reach a bunch of delicious-looking grapes. In the end he gives up, telling himself that they are probably sour and inedible anyway.
See also: grape, sour

sour grapes

an attitude in which someone disparages or pretends to despise something because they cannot have it themselves.
In Aesop's fable The Fox and the Grapes, the fox, unable to reach the tempting bunch of grapes, comforts himself with the thought that they were probably sour anyway.
1998 New Scientist At 66, I can be acquitted of any sour grapes, but I feel sorry for younger MPs…[who] have all been passed over.
See also: grape, sour

sour ˈgrapes

(saying) used to describe the behaviour of somebody who pretends that something they cannot have is of little value or interest: When she failed the entrance exam, she started saying that she never wanted to go to college anyway, but I think that’s just sour grapes.This idiom comes from one of Aesop’s fables. A fox cannot reach some grapes so he decides that they are not ready to eat.
See also: grape, sour
References in periodicals archive ?
Might there be just the slightest hint of sour grapes in Sir John Major's suggestion that British prime ministers be limited to eight years in office?
THIS may be interpreted as sour grapes after Hoch scuppered a 16-1 payout for Sports Betting followers, but the grumpy American must be chastised for calling a halt to the play-off on Sunday night, complaining of bad light.
Or is he too busy spitting out pips from the large bunch of sour grapes he might have just swallowed?
Cowritten by her elder sister, Sally Lapiduss--also a successful TV writer-producer (The Nanny, Mad About You) and also openly lesbian--Situation Tragedy is a hilarious evening of war stories from the sitcom front, but by virtue of Lapiduss's Emmy-nominated career, it's hardly sour grapes.
Sounds more like sour grapes from someone that wants a dig at the prince.
TELLY beauty Tatiana Ouliankina reckons Fair City bosses killed off her character Lana Borodin Dowling in a fit of sour grapes after she told t h e m s he was quitting the soap.
And his last book, Sour Grapes, published last year by Tafelberg, is an inspired collection of writing, that's opinionated and quirky, but always lots of fun - especially when he's being deliciously rude about some of the best-known British wine personalities.
It's like an extreme case of sour grapes and dirty tricks rolled into one.
Any claims to the contrary by Angelides sounded like pure sour grapes.
Neither, I suspect, it's just sour grapes and propaganda because the majority of the public support the ban.
AT first glance, Arsene Wenger's attack on Liverpool's advance to the Champions League Final may be viewed as a bitter outburst from a jealous man who has never made a serious impact in the competition and is fuelled by the juices of very sour grapes.
The board is already being investigated by the council over irregularities with jobs, so I suppose this might be sour grapes.
The era of 'anyone but England' has been all but swept away by the modern game and indulging in spoiler tactics just seems like sour grapes on the part of some losing fans.
He said: "The only sour grapes I've heard are the ones I read in the paper from Shane Dye, and I don't really want to comment on that.
But a spokeswoman for Cemex-US called its critics' view of sand-and-gravel operations across the country ``distorted'' and said the city was guilty of sour grapes because it had lost court battles against the mining giant.