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cloud-cuckoo land

An idealized mythical domain, as in
That idea about flying cars is straight out of cloud-cuckoo land
. This expression originated as a translation from the Greek of Aristophanes' play
The Birds
, where it signifies the realm built by the birds to separate the gods from humankind. It came into use in the 1820s. During the 19th century it began to be used for a place of wildly fanciful dreams, unrealistic expectations, or the like, and it also acquired the connotation of “crazy” (from
cuckoo
, slang for “crazy” since about 1900). Also see
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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