taking square peg and pounding into round hole

< Previous | Next >

birtankose

Member
Turkish
Hi there!

While i was studying on innovations around the world, i have seen a phrase on the opening page of a web-site:

"You can use another tools, but it's like taking a square peg and pounding it into round hole."

I understand from the expression that "other materials do not work and they are unnecessary."

Am i right? Is this a special phrase?"to take square peg and pounding it into round hole."

Thanks in advance!
 
  • Fabulist

    Banned
    American English
    It's "a round hole." The incongruity between a square peg and a round hole is a common metaphor in English. "Pounding" a square peg into a round hole is not a "special phrase." Often the phrase is used to indicate some kind of incompatability. A nerd sent to a sports camp might say that he "felt like a square peg in a round hole" or "fit in like a square peg in a round hole." The idea, of course, is that a square peg does not fit and will not go into a round hole (although it could if the diameter of the hole was at least slightly greater than the diagonal measurement across the square cross-section of the peg). Talking about pounding a square peg into a round hole emphasizes that something has to be forced to fit, it doesn't do so naturally.
     

    birtankose

    Member
    Turkish
    Thank you for your perfect explanation!
    Now i want to be sure by using this expression in my own sentence.
    While i was working for a third rate electric company as an engineer, i was feeling like a square peg in a round hole."

    I hope this is ok?

    Thanks again..
     

    Fabulist

    Banned
    American English
    Thank you for your perfect explanation!
    Now I want to be sure by using this expression in my own sentence.
    While I was working for a third rate electric company as an engineer, I was feeling like a square peg in a round hole."

    I hope this is ok?

    Thanks again..
    That would imply that your skills and knowledge were not needed or used properly, and that only a "first-rate electric company" would have appreciated your expertise or used it fully. If that is what you think, then you have used the simile properly.

    Please note that in English we always capitalize the first person singular pronoun: It is "I," not "i," regardless of where it appears in a sentence. English is unusual in this respect, but that's our rule.
     
    Last edited:
    < Previous | Next >
    Top