feast or famine

Idioms & Phrases

feast or famine

Also, either feast or famine. Either too much or too little, too many or too few. For example, Free-lancers generally find it's feast or faminetoo many assignments or too few, or Yesterday two hundred showed up at the fair, today two dozenit's either feast or famine. This expression, which transfers an overabundance or shortage of food to numerous other undertakings, was first recorded in 1732 as feast or fast, the noun famine being substituted in the early 1900s.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
Cite This Source
Explore Dictionary.com
Previous Definition: feast one's eyes on
Next Definition: feather
Words Near: feast or famine
More from Thesaurus.com
Synonyms and Antonyms for feast or famine
More from Reference.com
Search for articles containing feast or famine
More from Dictionary.com Translator
Dictionary.com Word FAQs

Dictionary.com presents 366 FAQs, incorporating some of the frequently asked questions from the past with newer queries.

Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature