sow one's wild oats

Idioms & Phrases

sow one's wild oats

Behave foolishly, immoderately or promiscuously when young, as in Brad has spent the last couple of years sowing his wild oats, but now he seems ready to settle down. This expression alludes to sowing inferior wild oats instead of good cultivated grain, the verb sowingthat is, "planting seed"in particular suggesting sexual promiscuity. [Mid-1500s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
Cite This Source
Explore Dictionary.com
Previous Definition: sow
Next Definition: space
More from Thesaurus.com
Synonyms and Antonyms for sow one's wild oats
More from Reference.com
Search for articles containing sow one's wild oats
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