kill the fatted calf

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kill the fatted calf

To prepare a lavish celebration, often to welcome someone back from a long absence. The phrase comes from the Biblical parable of the prodigal son, in which a father prepares a feast for his son who has returned home after squandering his fortune. My daughter is coming home from college for the summer, so we're going to kill the fatted calf and have a huge barbecue.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill the fatted calf

Fig. to prepare an elaborate banquet (in someone's honor). (From the biblical story recounting the return of the prodigal son.) When Bob got back from college, his parents killed the fatted calf and threw a great party. Sorry this meal isn't much, John. We didn't have time to kill the fatted calf.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill the fatted calf

Prepare for a joyful occasion or a warm welcome. For example, When Bill comes home from his trip to Korea we're going to kill the fatted calf. This expression alludes to the parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32), whose father welcomed him by serving the choicest calf after his return. [Early 1600s]
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill the fatted calf

If you kill the fatted calf, you do everything you can to welcome back a person who has been away for a period of time. He went away for year, and when he returned, his family didn't exactly kill the fatted calf. Note: This expression comes from the story of the prodigal son which is told by Jesus in the Bible (Luke 5:3-32). In this story, a young man returns home after wasting all the money his father has given him. However, his father is so pleased to see him that he celebrates his return by killing a calf and preparing a feast.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill the fatted calf

produce a lavish celebratory feast.
The allusion is to the New Testament story of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11–32), in which the forgiving father orders his best calf to be killed in order to provide a feast to celebrate the return of his wayward son. Fatted is an archaic form of the verb fat meaning ‘make or become fat’. Nowadays we use the forms fatten and fattened .
See also: calf, fat, kill

ˌkill the fatted ˈcalf

welcome home somebody who has been away for a long time by having a big celebration: My brother’s coming home tomorrow, so I expect my parents will be killing the fatted calf for him.This is from a story in the Bible, in which a father arranges a special meal when his son returns to the family after a long time away. A fatted calf is a young cow that has been given extra food to make it fat.
See also: calf, fat, kill

kill the fatted calf

To hold a celebration, usually a long-awaited homecoming. Luke 15:23 describes the return of the prodigal son as, “And bring here the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry . . .” Although the guest of honor in the biblical parable was a wastrel whose father welcomed home, “to kill the fatted calf” can refer to a party for anyone whom the host is pleased to see.
See also: calf, fat, kill