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Like a bull in a china shop

Like a bull in a china shop
If you say someone is like a bull in a china shop, you mean they are very clumsy or careless in the way they behave or move. Imagine a bull running around in a china shop: the bull is a big, strong and fast-moving animal and it would cause a lot of damage in a shop full of cups, saucers, plates and other things made of china. So this expression can mean that someone is clumsy and breaks things; or it can mean that they cause a lot of damage by acting impulsively or saying the wrong thing to people.

Like a bull in a china shop

The origins of this expression are not clear. China has been a popular high-status product in the UK for hundreds of years, so the idiom could have a long history, but it’s first recorded use is in America. It is used in a novel called Jacob Faithful, written by Frederick Marryat, published in 1834.

Ed knocked over the computer yesterday and broke it. Honestly, he’s like a bull in a china shop.

I asked my boyfriend to be tactful when he met my family for the first time, but did he? Oh no. He went in like a bull in a china shop and started arguing with everyone about politics.

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