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Meaning of "lion's share"



 
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Meaning of "lion's share" #1 (permalink) Thu May 19, 2005 17:06 pm   Meaning of "lion's share"
 

Test No. express/advan-1 "Animals", question 7

When the business folded, he took the lion's share of the assets.

(a) the easiest part
(b) the smallest part
(c) the biggest part
(d) the only part

Test No. express/advan-1 "Animals", answer 7

When the business folded, he took the biggest part of the assets.

Correct answer: (c) the biggest part
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I don't understand this expression at all.

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Lion's share #2 (permalink) Thu May 19, 2005 17:17 pm   Lion's share
 

Hi,

The lion is the king of the jungle and usually takes the most amount of food. If you take the lion's share, it means you take the biggest amount. In the test I've written here it means when the company closed, he took the largest amount of the profits.
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Lion's share #3 (permalink) Sun Feb 03, 2008 16:32 pm   Lion's share
 

I disagree with the response. Technically, since the expression comes from a poem where the lion got 100%, then the "lion's share" means 100%. Granted, in everyday English it's become "most," but it originally meant "all."
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Meaning of "lion's share" #4 (permalink) Sun Feb 03, 2008 18:19 pm   Meaning of "lion's share"
 

Hi,

Isn't 'every day English' what we're talking about?

Alan
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Lion's share #5 (permalink) Wed Jul 15, 2009 3:28 am   Lion's share
 

I also disagree with the answers given so far. I remember an English teacher of mine voicing her annoyance at changing meanings. Her example was that originally "lion's share" meant the best part -- that a lion will go for organs (the heart, liver, kidneys) and leave the rest, less desirable parts for others in the pride.
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Lion's share #6 (permalink) Wed Jul 15, 2009 5:26 am   Lion's share
 

Good morning.

Alan, as ever, is correct. In everyday conversation it means the greater part of the assets.

If you cannot accept a rational explanation ......................

Kitos.
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Meaning of "lion's share" #7 (permalink) Wed Jul 15, 2009 9:58 am   Meaning of "lion's share"
 

Hi Jetski,

Welcome to the forum. I am somewhat surprised at the attitude of your teacher. Did she believe that 'meanings' remained unchanged for ever? English is a living language, isn't it?

Alan
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Meaning of "lion's share" #8 (permalink) Wed Jul 15, 2009 14:48 pm   Meaning of "lion's share"
 

Hi, Alan
Of course, you're right. I do think, however, that it is a shame when a word or phrase loses its meaning through ignorance, laziness, and/or stupidity over time. I also think the original meaning, which existed easily through the fifties, served a good purpose and was rather more interesting, a nice nuance.
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Meaning of "lion's share" #9 (permalink) Wed Jul 15, 2009 15:50 pm   Meaning of "lion's share"
 

Good afternoon Jetski. Not wishing to be confrontational, but I don't think anyone, even in the fifties, would have painted such a graphic picture of the meaning.

Lion's share; more than a fair share, the most, 70/30 or even more.

:) Kitos.
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Meaning of "lion's share" #10 (permalink) Wed Jul 15, 2009 20:22 pm   Meaning of "lion's share"
 

I will always prefer the original meaning -- BEST or more desirable part, NOT necessarily largest part.....
Jetski
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