mad as a wet hen

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(as) mad as a wet hen

Enraged; extremely or inconsolably angry. My dad was mad as a wet hen after I crashed his car. You make me as mad as a wet hen with the way you carry on sometimes, you know that?
See also: hen, mad, wet
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

mad as a wet hen

Extremely angry. The source of this expression is a bit puzzling, since hens, while not waterfowl, are not distressed by wetness. Conjecture has it that it comes from a farmer’s tossing a bucket of water at hens and thereby causing a flapping uproar. The term appears in Money in the Bank (1942) by that noted purveyor of clichés, P. G. Wodehouse. A more logical variant is mad as a hornet. H. L. Mencken referred to it as a familiar simile in The American Language (1919), and it continues to be used.
See also: hen, mad, wet
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Police withheld the identity of the councilor from Baliwag, who claimed to be a bettor and was said to be mad as a wet hen when the raid was announced.
2) Ritchie Blackmore, as mad as a wet hen. 3) And how could they ignore the rich vein of mockery to be found in Uriah Heep, specially Mick Box who often took to the stage in what he fancied looked like pirate boots?