ferret

hly2004

Banned
chinese
Hi, everyone:

If you're not telling your partner that you bought yourself a new pair of jeans or you fudge how much you spent on your daughter's haircut, she will pick up on the secrecy. It isn't good for kids to see that kind of distrust between parents -- or to learn that money is something you have to be secretive about in your own family. So stop ferreting away cash!

Could you please tell me the meaning of "ferreting away cash"?

http://www.cnn.com/2007/HEALTH/parenting/03/28/money.smart.kids/index.html

Best wishes.
 
  • Thomas Tompion

    Member Emeritus
    English - England
    Ferrets are busy creatures which go down burrows. To ferret away cash is to store it carefully in a secret place. Isn't this meaning mentioned in the WR dictionary?

    p.s. no, it isn't. It ought to be.
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    Hi, Thomas Tompion, thanks~!.

    btw: my dictionary says it means "seek", Obviously, "ferret away" is a set phrase that should be interpreted as a whole.

    :)
     

    Moviefans

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Don't blame it on your dictionary. The basic meaning is there, and as the situation shows, it suffices.
     

    Moviefans

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    I find "search or discover by searching" as a basic meaning of "ferret", which i think is quite similar to the one you mentioned.

    Do you fear my dictionary cannot provide such basic meanings?
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    Indeed, I already looked it up in my dictionaries. But here "ferret away" has nearly an opposite meaning. It means "store it carefully in a secret place" in my context.
     

    Moviefans

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Hi, hly2004,
    Sorry, for I hadn't looked at the whole context. Now I see "ferret away" in this context really is totally opposite in meaning to the single word "ferret" we can find in our dictionaries.

    Sorry really for my harsh words. I sometimes make hasty judgements. That's one of my bad habits. Thank you for your tolerance.
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    Hi, hly2004,
    Sorry, for I hadn't looked at the whole context. Now I see "ferret away" in this context really is totally opposite in meaning to the single word "ferret" we can find in our dictionaries.

    Sorry really for my harsh words. I sometimes make hasty judgements. That's one of my bad habits. Thank you for your tolerance.

    That's all right:p Let's improve together here~!:thumbsup:
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Member Emeritus
    English - England
    It might be worth saying that there's the idiom to ferret out, which means to discover by continuous diligent enquiry. The more usual expression for to hide cash would be to squirrel away.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Member Emeritus
    English - England
    It might be worth saying that there's the idiom to ferret out, which means to discover by continuous diligent enquiry. The more usual expression for to hide cash would be to squirrel away.
    For what it's worth I've changed my view. I don't think to ferret away cash is a normal way of saying to hide it in a secret place. You would say squirrel away cash; the normal expression using ferrets is to ferret out, which we've talked about. The use of language, naturally enough, follows the temperaments and habits of the animals. Ferrets don't hibernate, but squirrels do.
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    Yes, I agree. Here's what I found:
    small mammal which is bred for hunting rabbits and rats, domesticated variety of the polecat; thin ribbon of cotton or silk (for binding or trimming)
    hunt with a ferret; drive out; worry; investigate; search about; find, discover (after searching)
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Member Emeritus
    English - England
    Yes, I agree. Here's what I found:
    small mammal which is bred for hunting rabbits and rats, domesticated variety of the polecat; thin ribbon of cotton or silk (for binding or trimming)
    hunt with a ferret; drive out; worry; investigate; search about; find, discover (after searching)
    Yes, certainly. Almost anyone who lives in the countryside is familiar with ferrets. I know a child of eleven who always has several in his pockets and about his person. People who catch rabbits send them down the rabbit-holes to flush them out. They are lithe, beautiful and delightful creatures, but don't get bitten by one.
     
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