As Dead As a Dodo (Origin)

by Craig Shrives

What Is the Origin of the Saying "As Dead As a Dodo"?

If something is said to be as dead a dodo, it is not working, obsolete, or unavailable. It refers to the flightless and now extinct bird that was taken by sailors to their ship and kept alive for fresh meat. The Portuguese named the birds doudo, meaning stupid. Dodos were caught and eaten into extinction during the 17th Century. Thereafter, the phrase passed into the English language.
As Dead As a Dodo (Origin)

Previous and Next Sayings

Test Your Knowledge of English Proverbs and Idioms

Ready for the Test?

More Proverbs, Sayings, and Idioms

Help Us Improve Grammar Monster

  • Do you disagree with something on this page?
  • Did you spot a typo?

Find Us Quicker!

  • When using a search engine (e.g., Google, Bing), you will find Grammar Monster quicker if you add #gm to your search term.
Next lesson >

See Also

What are idioms? What is figurative language? A list of common grammar errors A list of easily confused words A list of sayings and proverbs

Page URL