catbird seat

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Expression used to describe an enviable position, often one of great advantage.

Etymology:

  • The expression may originate in regard to the gray catbird, as it was in use in the 19th century in the southern United States. It was featured in the 1942 short story "The Catbird Seat" by James Thurber, and popularized by baseball commentator Red Barber, and often referred to baseball. The expression, according to James Thurber, comes from the observation of the catbird of the family Ptilonorhynchidae. Some of the male birds will assemble several hundred colored rocks or shells, arranging them in a remarkable artistic display, in order to build a "seat" atop which his mate will eventually be enthroned.
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Submitted on September 01, 2009

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Nearby phrases

Some more phrases from our dictionary similar to catbird seat

How to pronounce this phrase?

  1. Alex
    US English
    Daniel
    British
    Karen
    Australian
    Veena
    Indian

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    "catbird seat." Phrases.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 6 May 2021. <https://www.phrases.com/phrase/catbird-seat_2809>.

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