Lion's share

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Chapinita, Dec 11, 2006.

  1. Chapinita Member

    Spanish, Guatemala
    Hi, everybody!

    What is the meaning of the expression "lion's share"?

    Thanks a bunch!
  2. Dimcl Senior Member

    British Columbia, Canada
    Canadian English
    It means the majority of something. There's half a pie left and we share it but don't divide it in half (I give you a larger piece than I take) - I've given you "the lion's share".
  3. MissFit

    MissFit Senior Member

    It's a very literal expression. When wild African lions eat, it's the lionesses who do the hunting, but the male lions get to eat first and so they get the largest share and the most desirable parts. Then the lionesses and cubs have their turn eating. After that, the hyenas and scavenger birds get their turn, if there's anything left.
  4. Chapinita Member

    Spanish, Guatemala
    Thanks for your help... you are great!
  5. hall0559 New Member

    USA English
    It may have an older origin but I think its best described in the Aesop's fable:

    The Lion's Share

    The Lion went once a-hunting along with the Fox, the Jackal, and the Wolf. They hunted and they hunted till at last they surprised a Stag, and soon took its life. Then came the question how the spoil should be divided. "Quarter me this Stag," roared the Lion; so the other animals skinned it and cut it into four parts. Then the Lion took his stand in front of the carcass and pronounced judgment: The first quarter is for me in my capacity as King of Beasts; the second is mine as arbiter; another share comes to me for my part in the chase; and as for the fourth quarter, well, as for that, I should like to see which of you will dare to lay a paw upon it."

    "Humph," grumbled the Fox as he walked away with his tail between his legs; but he spoke in a low growl."You may share the labours of the great, but you will not share the spoil."


    As you can see its not really ment to be the majority of something, but that is how its mostly used, If you got 60% and the other party got 40% people now would say you got the lion's share, but in reality the lion's share is everything or almost everything.

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