hold out the olive branch

hold out an/the olive branch

To extend an offer or gesture of peace, reconciliation, truce, etc., so as to end a disagreement or dispute. If you find yourself in a spat with a friend, try to be the bigger person and be the one to hold out the olive branch. I was still hurt by the way my parents had lied to me, but I decided to hold out an olive branch by going home for Christmas.
See also: branch, hold, olive, out

hold out the olive branch (to someone)

To extend an offer or gesture of peace, reconciliation, truce, etc. (to someone), so as to end a disagreement or dispute. The conservatives in Congress seem to be holding out the olive branch to Democrats on the issue of raising the debt ceiling. If you find yourself in a spat with a friend, try to be the bigger person and be the one to hold out the olive branch.
See also: branch, hold, olive, out

hold out the olive branch

Fig. to offer to end a dispute and be friendly; to offer reconciliation. (The olive branch is a symbol of peace and reconciliation. A biblical reference.) Jill was the first to hold out the olive branch after our argument. I always try to hold out the olive branch to someone I have offended. Life is too short for a person to bear grudges for very long.
See also: branch, hold, olive, out
References in periodicals archive ?
The phrase " to hold out the olive branch, " meaning to make overtures to peace, alludes, of course, to its ancient identification with peace.