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cut capers

Also, cut a caper. Frolic or romp, as in The children cut capers in the pile of raked leaves. The noun caper comes from the Latin for “goat,” and the allusion is to act in the manner of a young goat clumsily frolicking about. The expression was first recorded in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night (1:3): “Faith, I can cut a caper.”
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Examples from the Web for cut capers
Historical Examples
  • Much as he loved to cut capers and play tricks on others, Moses never liked to have any one get a laugh on him.

    The Tale of Miss Kitty Cat Arthur Scott Bailey
  • For Toddy, Alresca was simply an individual who sang and cut capers.

    The Ghost Arnold Bennett
  • And then, when they were safe in their room, Waveney chose to be ridiculous and cut capers.

    Mollie's Prince Rosa Nouchette Carey
  • I had to choose: cut capers and be followed, or walk in dignity, ignored.

    Paul Kelver Jerome Klapka, AKA Jerome K. Jerome
  • With a pole he had stepped aboard, and then proceeded to "cut capers."

    The Chums of Scranton High Donald Ferguson
  • They dress him up in a clown's costume, and order him to cut capers, turn and twist and bow, and kill—he does it all submissively.

  • Then throwing aside his crutches, he began to cut capers, as if nothing ailed him, to the still greater amazement of the negro.

    The Exemplary Novels of Cervantes Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
  • "Dancing-masters" were those who taught their scholars to cut capers by running swords through their legs.

  • And you won't kick up, and rear up and cut capers, like a horse?

    The Red Moccasins Morrison Heady
  • He felt so light-hearted and joyous that he would have willingly thrown his square hat in the air, and cut capers on the pavement.

    Mrs. Thompson William Babington Maxwell

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