pearls before swine, cast not

Cultural Dictionary

pearls before swine, Cast not definition


An adaptation of a saying of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount. The entire passage reads, “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”

Note: The meaning of the passage is disputed, but seems generally to be that the followers of Jesus should pass his message on to those most likely to accept it.
Note: Generally, to “cast pearls before swine” is to share something of value with those who will not appreciate it.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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