Teaching grandmother to suck eggs is one English saying definition that a human being is providing advice to someone else about a subject that they already know around - and probably an ext than the first person. "Egg sucking" removed the egg contents while maintaining the shell intact. Two small holes to be made ~ above the end of the egg, and also the components sucked out. The shell could then be painted (Ukrainian Easter egg) or otherwise offered for decorative functions without it coming to be rotten and also smelling bad.

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Origins that the phrase

The beginnings of the expression are no clear. The Old English Dictionary and also others suggest that it comes from a translation in 1707, through J. Stevens, that Francisco de Quevedo, a Spanish author: "You would have me teach mine Grandame come suck eggs."

Recorded usage


“I remember mine old schoolmaster, who was a prodigious great scholar, used regularly to say, Polly matete cry city is my daskalon. The English that which, he told us, was, that a child may sometimes teach his grandmother to suck eggs”

“But what am i about? If my grandmother sucks eggs, to be it I who taught her?”

The phrase was supplied in the 1890s in a Punch magazine cartoon:

"You see, Grandmama, before you extract the contents of this bird"s egg by suction, you should make an incision at one extremity, and also a equivalent orifice in ~ the other." Grandmama"s an answer is come the effect, "Dearie me! and we offered to just make a feet at every end."

In "Hog top top Ice" (Harper & Row, brand-new York, 1948), Charles Earle Funk says:

"To teach one"s grandmother to suck egg - To offer needless assistance; come waste one"s efforts upon effective matters; especially, to market advice come an expert.

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This details expression is fine over two hundred years old; that is simply a variation of an older layout that was absurd enough to appeal come the famous fancy.

The phrase has been supplied in the movie The huge Country:

"Go teach your grandmother to suck eggs! I"ve been taking care of guns prefer this, flintlock and also caplock, because before you were born."

The heat was likewise used (as a referral to Burl Ives" personality in The huge Country) in the 6th episode the the an initial season of The Ren & Stimpy Show:

"I don"t think you"re happy enough! That"s right! I"ll teach girlfriend to it is in happy! I"ll teach your grandmother to suck eggs! Now, boys and girls, let"s shot it again!"

The phrase has been character by the personality Minsc in the role-playing video clip game Baldur"s Gate. Referring to his genius "miniature-giant-space-hamster" Boo, he says:

"Don"t teach mine hamster to suck eggs!"

Sméagol instructed his grandmother, as related in the Riddle contest in Chapter five of The Hobbit:

"But all of sudden Gollum psychic thieving from nests long ago, and sitting under the river financial institution teaching his grandmother, teaching his grandmother come suck — ‘Eggses!’ the hissed.