What do a.m. and p.m. stand for?

kettle of fish

an awkward, difficult, or bad situation; muddle; mess:
He's managed to get himself into a fine kettle of fish!
a state of affairs; a matter under consideration:
The new proposal is quite a different kettle of fish from the last one.
Origin of kettle of fish
1735-45 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for kettle of fish
  • And a pretty kettle of fish they make of it between them.
  • The origins of life are an entirely different kettle of fish.
  • Getting those molecules to stick only to tumour cells, though, is a different kettle of fish.
  • Speculators, despite their bad name, are a different and far healthier kettle of fish.
  • Semiconductors and microchips are a different kettle of fish.
  • Contrarian science policy is another kettle of fish because your choice is either to enact the policy or not.
  • He has sown his wild oats and finds himself undismayed, but nevertheless with a pretty kettle of fish in his palatial cauldrons.
  • Criminal prosecutions are different kettle of fish entirely, and her responsibilities and duties would be different.
  • It's an altogether different kettle of fish and it takes focus and concentration, and it takes consideration.
  • So that's a different kettle of fish, if you will, from what you're discussing now.
British Dictionary definitions for kettle of fish

kettle of fish

a situation; state of affairs (often used ironically in the phrase a pretty or fine kettle of fish)
case; matter for consideration: that's quite a different kettle of fish
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for kettle of fish

kettle of fish

Related Terms

fine kettle of fish

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with kettle of fish

kettle of fish

Also, a fine or pretty kettle of fish. An unpleasant or messy predicament, as in They haven't spoken in years, and they're assigned to adjoining seats—that's a fine kettle of fish. This term alludes to the Scottish riverside picnic called kettle of fish, where freshly caught salmon were boiled and eaten out of hand. [ Early 1700s ]
a different or another kettle of fish. A very different matter or issue, not necessarily a bad one. For example, They're paying for the meal? That's a different kettle of fish. [ First half of 1900s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for kettle of fish

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for kettle

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for kettle of fish