Dutch courage


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Related to Dutch courage: Dutch uncle, Going Dutch

Dutch courage

1. Liquor. Come down to the bar and join us in drinking some Dutch courage!
2. The false sense of confidence induced by alcohol consumption. Joe gets into a lot of fights when he drinks, and I suspect that Dutch courage is to blame.
3. Drugs. You didn't bring any Dutch courage? Man, I need to get high tonight!
See also: courage, Dutch
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

Dutch courage

unusual or artificial courage arising from the influence of alcohol. (Viewed by some as insulting to the Dutch.) It was Dutch courage that made the football fan attack the policeman. It will take a bit of Dutch courage to make an after-dinner speech.
See also: courage, Dutch
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Dutch courage

False courage acquired by drinking liquor, as in He had a quick drink to give him Dutch courage. This idiom alludes to the reputed heavy drinking of the Dutch, and was first referred to in Edmund Waller's Instructions to a Painter (1665): "The Dutch their wine, and all their brandy lose, Disarm'd of that from which their courage grows."
See also: courage, Dutch
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Dutch courage

mainly BRITISH
If you talk about Dutch courage, you mean the feeling of bravery and confidence in yourself that results from drinking alcohol. The survey also noted how some performers used a little Dutch courage to overcome inhibitions. Sometimes before leaving I would drink a glass of vodka on the stairs for Dutch courage. Note: In the past, the Dutch had a reputation for drinking a lot of alcohol.
See also: courage, Dutch
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

Dutch courage

bravery induced by drinking alcohol.
The phrase Dutch courage stems from a long-standing British belief that the Dutch are extraordinarily heavy drinkers.
See also: courage, Dutch
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

ˌDutch ˈcourage

(British English, informal) courage or confidence that you get by drinking alcohol: I was afraid of having to tell my wife about what had happened, so I went to the pub to get some Dutch courage.
See also: courage, Dutch
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

Dutch courage

1. n. liquor; false courage from drinking liquor. A couple of shots of Dutch courage, and he was ready to face anything.
2. n. drugs. Max deals in Dutch courage, as he calls it.
See also: courage, Dutch
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.

Dutch courage

Boldness induced by drinking. The term alludes to the reputation of the Dutch as heavy drinkers, which in the case of the whiskey-loving British is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. The idea dates back at least to the seventeenth century, when Edmund Waller wrote, “The Dutch their wine, and all their brandy lose, disarm’d of that from which their courage grows” (Instructions to a Painter, 1665). Sir Walter Scott used the term several times, but it may be dying out.
See also: courage, Dutch
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer

Dutch courage

Bravery acquired by drinking alcohol. Political and economic rivals during the 17th century, England and Holland fought a series of wars. English propagandists spread the rumor that Dutch soldiers and sailors developed the necessary nerve to fight only after drinking gin and other alcoholic beverages. The Dutch haven't fared well in the English language. Other unflattering phrases are “Dutch treat (you pay for only yourself), “Dutch uncle” (a stern person, especially one who gave you a lecture you weren't happy about receiving), and “double Dutch” (gibberish).
See also: courage, Dutch
Endangered Phrases by Steven D. Price Copyright © 2011 by Steven D. Price
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