Learn idioms with comprehensive meaning, examples and origin details.


ugly duckling

an ugly duckling


  • a young person who turns out to be beautiful or talented against all expectations.
  • one that is considered ugly or unpromising at first but has the potential to become beautiful or admirable in maturity.
  • an unattractive child who becomes a beautiful or much-admired adult.


  1. Some people think they’ve turned into an ugly duckling whereas the truth is they are & look the same as they used to in their childhood.
  2. Mira was mocked for her personality when she was young, but by having been offered a movie as the lead actress, everyone realized that she was an ugly duckling.
  3. Aditya had no skills during his childhoods but all of a sudden he turned out to be an ugly duckling after being selected for the national football championship.
  4. I was going through my childhood pictures & to my amaze, I realized that I’ve turned into an ugly duckling.
  5. Samaira was all shy & chubby when young. Now  she is the most beautiful & fittest actress; indeed, she has turned into an ugly duckling.
  6. The woman who takes personality development classes wasn’t so since childhood but has now turned into an ugly duckling.
  7. Who calls her an ugly duckling knows nothing about her. She has been exceptionally talented since childhood but never revealed it to the world.

The Ugly Duckling is a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen in which the ‘ugly duckling’, mocked and jeered at by his peers, eventually develops into a beautiful swan, hence the idiom derived- an ugly duckling.

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