Sent to Coventry (Origin)

by Craig Shrives

What Is the Origin of the Saying "Sent to Coventry"?

During the English Civil War (1642-49), Coventry was a strong Parliamentarian town. Due to this, Royalist soldiers stationed in or near Coventry would be totally ignored by the locals. Excluded from taverns and all merry making in general, the Royalists would be forced to endure a very miserable existence. As a result, the term to be sent to Coventry came to mean to be excluded from events or to be a social outcast.
Sent to Coventry (Origin)

Examples of Use:

  • Oliver worked while the others went on strike, so they sent him to Coventry.
  • We'll be sent to Coventry if we don't clinch this sale.
  • The team suspected that Jack had offered to work for another company, so he was sent to Coventry.

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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

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