Idioms

Learn idioms with comprehensive meaning, examples and origin details.

Idioms

let bygones be bygones

let bygones be bygones

Meaning

  • what’s done is done
  • don’t worry about the past, especially past mistakes or grievances
  • to forget past differences and conflicts
  • let the unpleasant occurrences of the past be forgotten
  • ignore a past offence and reconcile
  • allow past disagreements or arguments to be forgotten
  • let the unpleasantness be a thing of the past

Example Sentences

  1. The two international rivals shook hands and agreed to let bygones be bygones.
  2. They decided to let bygones be bygones and made peace with each other.
  3. I feel we should let bygones be bygones and move on to the more important things.
  4. Though your first attempt was a failure, you would do well to let bygones be bygones and move ahead in your endeavour.
  5. The two neighbours had always been quarreling, but they finally shook hands and decided to let bygones be bygones when they met at a local event.
  6. Let’s put all the bitterness behind and let bygones be bygones; we’ll make a fresh start and try all over again.

Origin
The word bygone literally means “a thing that has gone by” that is, a thing that is past. It was used with this meaning till the 15th-16th century. Over time, around the 17th century, bygone came to be associated specifically with past events that were unpleasant. Though the origin of this exact phrase is not known, it can be said that it came from the evolution if this usage of the word bygone.

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