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wild-goose chase

[wahyld-goos] /ˈwaɪldˈgus/
noun
1.
a wild or absurd search for something nonexistent or unobtainable:
a wild-goose chase looking for a building long demolished.
2.
any senseless pursuit of an object or end; a hopeless enterprise:
Her scheme of being a movie star is a wild-goose chase.
Origin
1585-1595
1585-95
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for wild goose chase

wild-goose chase

noun
1.
an absurd or hopeless pursuit, as of something unattainable
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
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Word Origin and History for wild goose chase
n.

1592, first attested in "Romeo and Juliet," where it evidently is a figurative use of an earlier (but unrecorded) literal sense in reference to a kind of follow-the-leader steeplechase.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with wild goose chase

wild goose chase

A futile search or pursuit, as in I think she sent us on a wild goose chase looking for their beach house. This idiom originally referred to a form of 16th-century horseracing requiring riders to follow a leader in a particular formation (presumably resembling a flock of geese in flight). Its figurative use dates from about 1600.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Difficulty index for wild-goose chase

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Word Value for wild

8
9
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