Birds of a Feather Flock Together – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Are you looking for a way to describe a gathering of like-minded people? If so, you could use the saying “birds of a feather flock together.” This post unpacks the meaning and origin of this expression.

Meaning

The meaning of “birds of a feather flock together” refers to a group of people who share similar interests, beliefs, and ideologies. Community is a big part of the human experience, and we all want people to listen to our ideas and thoughts.

We also like being around people who have a similar outlook on life or worldview. The phrase “birds of a feather flock together” can describe an event, like a seminar, where people will meet to discuss a certain topic they find interesting.

The saying also suits situations where you see a large group of people talking with each other in a friendly manner.

Example Usage

“I went to that seminar on Saturday and learned so much. Everyone was on the same page, and we all had the same mindset. Birds of a feather flock together, and I’m glad I found a group that thinks like me.”

“Birds of a feather flock together; look at all those homeless people in that park.”

“It’s not surprising that you found a bunch of people just like you at that meeting. Birds of a feather flock together.”

“Why is it that people who surf only hang around with other surfers? It’s like they all speak a different language or something. I guess birds of a feather flock together.”

“That protest just gains more momentum with each day. Birds of a feather flock together. Let’s hope they’re not a violent bunch.”

“Birds of a feather flock together. Look at all those kids gathering around the Nike shop for the latest release. I bet they are all sneakerheads looking to flip the shoes.”

Origin

The origin of the expression “birds of a feather flock together” comes from “The Dictionarie in Spanish and English,” published by the English lexicographer John Minsheu in 1599.

“Birdes of a feather will flocke togither.”

The expression also features in the 1856 translation of Plato’s Republic by Benjamin Jowett.

“Men of my age flock together; we are birds of a feather, as the old proverb says.”

Around the time of its appearance, people would refer to birds as “flying” rather than “flocking” together. So, the phrase also adopted this spelling, where it appears in the translation of Livy’s “Romane Historie,” published in 160o.

“As commonly birds of a feather will flye together.”

Phrases Similar to Birds of a Feather Flock Together

  • Great minds think alike.
  • Two peas in a pod.
  • Bobbsey twins.
  • Compadres or comrades.

Phrases Opposite to Birds of a Feather Flock Together

  • They are nothing alike.
  • Absolutely distinct from.
  • Diametrically opposed.

What is the Correct Saying?

  • Birds of a feather flock together.

Ways People May Say Birds of a Feather Flock Together Incorrectly

Some people may use the phrase to describe the actions of birds flocking together. However, the saying has nothing to do with birds or animals. It’s a way to express people with a similar mindset congregating together.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Birds of a Feather Flock Together

You can use the saying “birds of a feather flock together” when you’re trying to explain how like-minded people attract each other, forming relationships based on common ground. The phrase suits social use more than in the professional arena.

You can use the phrase to describe how people tend to gravitate towards other people with similar values, morals, and ideologies. The saying can apply to social groups, colleagues, friends, and family members.

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