bide one's time

bide

[bahyd]
verb (used with object), bided or bode; bided or (Archaic) bid; biding.
1.
Archaic. to endure; bear.
2.
Obsolete. to encounter.
verb (used without object), bided or bode; bided or (Archaic) bid; biding.
3.
to dwell; abide; wait; remain.
Idioms
4.
bide one's time, to wait for a favorable opportunity: He wanted to ask for a raise, but bided his time.

Origin:
before 900; Middle English biden, Old English bīdan; cognate with Old Frisian bīdia, Old Saxon bīdan, Old High German bītan, Old Norse bītha, Gothic beidan, Latin fīdere, Greek peíthesthai to trust, rely < Indo-European *bheidh-; the meaning apparently developed: have trust > endure > wait > abide > remain

bider, noun


3. stay, linger, tarry.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bide (baɪd)
 
vb , bides, biding, bided, bode, bided
1.  archaic, dialect or (intr) to continue in a certain place or state; stay
2.  archaic, dialect or (intr) to live; dwell
3.  archaic, dialect or (tr) to tolerate; endure
4.  (Scot) bide a wee to stay a little
5.  (Scot) bide by to abide by
6.  bide one's time to wait patiently for an opportunity
 
[Old English bīdan; related to Old Norse bītha to wait, Gothic beidan, Old High German bītan]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

bide
O.E. bidan "to stay, continue, live, remain," also "to trust, rely" (cognate of O.N. biða, O.Fris. bidia, Goth. beidan "to wait"), apparently from PIE *bheidh-, an extended stem of one root of O.E. biddan (see bid), the original sense of which was "to command," and "to trust"
(cf. Gk. peithein "to persuade," pistis "faith;" L. fidere "to trust," foedus "compact, treaty," O.C.S. beda "need"). Perhaps the sense evolved in prehistoric times through "endure," and "endure a wait," to "to wait." Preserved in Scotland and northern England, replaced elsewhere by abide in all senses except to bide one's time.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

bide one's time

Wait for the opportune moment, as in The cat sat in front of the mousehole, biding its time. This phrase employs the verb to bide in the sense of "to wait for," a usage dating from about a.d. 950 and surviving mainly in this locution.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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