family


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crown jewels

1. The precious jewels, and the regalia or which they are featured, of a monarch or sovereign, as worn or used on a state occasion. One of the greatest mysteries of 20th-century Ireland was the case of the Irish Crown Jewels, which were stolen from Dublin Castle in 1907 and never recovered.
2. slang A man's genitals, especially the testicles. When she heard he had an affair, she kicked him right in the crown jewels.
See also: crown, jewel

family jewels

slang Male genitalia, especially the testicles. An allusion to the testes' role in producing offspring and thus maintaining the family line. When she heard he had an affair, she kicked him right in the family jewels.
See also: family, jewel

family man

A man devoted to taking care of his wife and children. Paul goes home every night after work and never likes to spend time away from his wife and kids. He's a real family man.
See also: family, man

the black sheep of the family

One who is unlike other family members, sometimes due to intentional rebelliousness, and often viewed unfavorably by them. Everyone likes me because I'm so quiet and obedient. The same cannot be said for my wild cousin Nathan, who is the black sheep of the family.
See also: black, family, of, sheep

run in the/(one's) family

To be a hereditary trait. I wonder if she's pregnant with twins—they do run in our family, you know. Cassie's drawing will probably win the contest—artistic ability just runs in her family.
See also: family, run

in a/the family way

euphemism Pregnant. Did you hear the good news? Kristin is in the family way!
See also: family, way

(all) in the family

restricted to one's own family, as with private or embarrassing information. Don't tell anyone else. Please keep it all in the family. He only told his brother because he wanted it to remain in the family.
See also: family

black sheep of the family

Fig. the worst member of the family. Mary is the black sheep of the family. She's always in trouble with the police. He keeps making a nuisance of himself. What do you expect from the black sheep of the family?
See also: black, family, of, sheep

family that prays together stays together

Prov. Families who practice religion together will not break apart through divorce or estrangement. Mother believed that the family that prays together stays together and insisted that we all say prayers every night.
See also: family, pray, stay, that, together

How's the family?

 and How's your family?
an expression used on greeting to ask about the state of the person's immediate family. Bob: Hello, Fred. How are you? Fred: Fine, thanks. Bob: How's the family? Fred: Great! How's yours? Bob: Couldn't bebetter. "How's the family?" asked Bill, greeting his boss.

*in a family way

 and *in the family way
Fig. pregnant. (*Typically: be ~; get someone ~.) I've heard that Mrs. Smith is in a family way. Our dog is in the family way.
See also: family, way

like one of the family

as if someone (or a pet) were a member of one's family. We treat our dog like one of the family. We are very happy to have you stay with us, Bill. I hope you don't mind if we treat you like one of the family.
See also: family, like, of, one

run in the family

[for a characteristic] to appear in many (or all) members of a family. My grandparents lived well into their nineties, and it runs in the family. My brothers and I have red hair. It runs in the family.
See also: family, run

crown jewels

1. A prized possession or asset, as in The Iliad and Odyssey are the crown jewels of ancient literature, or The software products are the company's crown jewels. This usage transfers the value of royal jewels to some other object. [Late 1800s]
2. Also, family jewels. The male genitals, especially the testicles. For example, She gave the would-be mugger a hard kick in the family jewels. A slang euphemism, the term dates from the 1970s, and the variant from the early 1900s.
See also: crown, jewel

in the family way

Pregnant, as in Mary's in the family way again. This euphemistic expression dates from the late 1700s and may be dying out.
See also: family, way

run in the blood

Also, run in the family. Be characteristic of a family or passed on from one generation to the next, as in That happy-go-lucky trait runs in the blood, or Big ears run in the family. The first term dates from the early 1600s, the second from the late 1700s.
See also: blood, run

sell the family silver

If you accuse someone of selling the family silver, you mean that they are getting rid of something valuable in order to get a quick advantage when it would be better to keep it for an advantage in the future. He accused the government of selling the family silver by allowing foreign investors to purchase the buildings. As Maureen Freely says, from bitter experience: `Writing about these things is like selling the family silver. You can only do it once.'
See also: family, sell, silver

the black sheep

or

the black sheep of the family

COMMON If you describe someone as the black sheep or the black sheep of the family, you mean that the other people in their family disapprove of them and consider their behaviour to be bad. `I was always the black sheep,' he says. `Everyone else stayed in New Jersey but I was the one to go.' My uncle was the black sheep of the family and we were never encouraged to talk about him. Note: Black sheep are less valuable than white sheep since their wool cannot be dyed. In addition, people used to associate the colour black with evil.
See also: black, sheep

the black sheep

a person considered to have brought discredit upon a family or other group; a bad character.
See also: black, sheep

the (or your) family jewels

a man's genitals. informal
See also: family, jewel

in the family way

pregnant. informal
See also: family, way

sell the family silver

part with a valuable resource in order to gain an immediate advantage.
In 1985 , the former British prime minister Harold Macmillan made a speech to the Tory Reform Group on the subject of privatization (the selling off of nationalized industries to private companies). He likened it to the selling of heirlooms by impoverished aristocratic families: ‘First of all the Georgian silver goes…’.
See also: family, sell, silver

one ˌbig ˌhappy ˈfamily

(informal) a group of people who live or work together happily and without disagreements: We were always together. We were like one big happy family. ♢ (ironic) ‘Is your office a happy place to work in?’ ‘Oh sure, we’re just one big happy family. Everybody hates everybody else.’
See also: big, family, happy, one

in the ˈfamily way

(old-fashioned, informal) pregnant
See also: family, way

run in the ˈfamily

(of a physical characteristic or moral quality) be something that many members of a family have: He was never going to live long because heart disease runs in both families.Good looks run in the family.
See also: family, run

family jewels

n. the testicles. (Jocular and euphemistic. They are necessary to produce a family.) Hey, careful of the family jewels!
See also: family, jewel

in a family way

and in the family way
mod. pregnant. I hear that Britney is in a family way.
See also: family, way

in the family way

verb
See also: family, way

in the family way

Pregnant.
See also: family, way

start a family

To conceive or have a first child.
See also: family, start
References in classic literature ?
At Chelicothe I spent my time as comfortably as I could expect; was adopted, accordin to their custom, into a family where I became a son, and had a great share in the affection of my new parents, brothers, sisters, and friends.
They had begun to question the old lady as to why one family had been unable to pay, trying to show her by figures that it ought to have been possible; and Grandmother Majauszkiene had disputed their figures-- "You say twelve dollars a month; but that does not include the interest.
Political troubles in France, at last, led the family again to seek an asylum in this country.
Micawber, pensively shaking her head, 'that my family will appear on board, before we finally depart.
Up to a certain point it was a common enough tale of the decline of a great family's fortunes--the tale of a family lawyer.
Well, I have heard once or twice, 'tis true, that my family had seen better days afore they came to Blackmoor.
On the sideboard, between fluted Sheraton knife-cases, stood a decanter of Haut Brion, and another of the old Lanning port (the gift of a client), which the wastrel Tom Lanning had sold off a year or two before his mysterious and discreditable death in San Francisco--an incident less publicly humiliating to the family than the sale of the cellar.
Thorpe, most happy to be on speaking terms with a man of General Tilney's importance, had been joyfully and proudly communicative; and being at that time not only in daily expectation of Morland's engaging Isabella, but likewise pretty well resolved upon marrying Catherine himself, his vanity induced him to represent the family as yet more wealthy than his vanity and avarice had made him believe them.
On the particular morning on which our story has opened, the family had assembled in the dining-room, and were waiting the general's appearance, the latter having promised to come this day.
I remember that on one occasion when I went into one of these cabins for dinner, when I sat down to the table for a meal with the four members of the family, I noticed that, while there were five of us at the table, there was but one fork for the five of us to use.
These questions, then as now, existed only for those who see nothing in marriage but the pleasure married people get from one another, that is, only the beginnings of marriage and not its whole significance, which lies in the family.
The family were in somewhat humble circumstances, subsisting by cultivation of a small and not very fertile plantation.
Primrose tells of it: "My wife and daughters happening to return a visit to neighbour Flamborough's, found that family had lately got their pictures drawn by a limner, who travelled the country, and took likenesses for fifteen shillings a-head.
The three existing genera, a14, q14, p14, will form a small family; b14 and f14 a closely allied family or sub-family; and o14, e14, m14, a third family.
In this situation Black George found his family, when he came home for the purpose before mentioned.
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