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Idiom

To Get the Wrong End of the Stick: Origin and Meaning

Meaning
When someone has misunderstood something you’ve said. They have probably been very offended or angry by something they think you’ve said but you actually meant something different.
Origin
(to) get the wrong end of the stick In the medieval period, people used a single stick for all general tasks. They would always hold the same end of the stick, as that end never touched the ground. To get the wrong end of the stick means to accidentally use the part of the stick that has touched all the dirty objects you may have been working with that day.
Examples
1. You’ve got the wrong end of the stick – I didn’t invite your husband to the party because I know he finishes work late. It’s not because I don’t like him!

2. My boss thinks I took Monday off work because I was hungover. She’s got the wrong end of the stick – I was sick with the flu!