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15 Bear Idioms and Phrases Explained

Updated on August 23, 2020
Ben Reed profile image

Ben has held a life-long interest in language and has a particular interest in the expressions, phrases, and idioms that contribute to it.

15 Bear Idioms and Phrases Explained

The English language contains a wide range of idioms and phrases that have their origins in people's observations and interactions with the Bear.

Many of the idioms related to bears, express the strength and brutishness of these magnificent animals. Yet it is perhaps a little strange that as children, we often have a different opinion of these creatures, seeing them as cuddly, cute, and sweet.

A Collection of Bear Idioms and Phrases

Idioms about Bears. Bears are such strong and formidable characters - even when just chilling.
Idioms about Bears. Bears are such strong and formidable characters - even when just chilling. | Source

As Busy as a Hibernating Bear

1. To be as busy as a hibernating Bear.

Meaning: To suggest that someone is not at all busy.

Example sentence: "Tom says that he has no time to help out at the party, but I know he is off work that day, he is about as busy as a hibernating bear.”

A Bear Hug

2. To give someone a Bear hug.

Meaning: To put your arms around someone and hug them tightly in a show of affection.

Example sentence: "He put his arms around tightly around me and gave me a huge bear hug."

A Bear for Punishment

3. To be a Bear for punishment.

Meaning: To stand rough treatment. A way of saying that someone is rugged or tough.

Example sentence: "Tony is a tough guy; he is a real bear for punishment."

Bear Market

4. To be in a Bear Market.

Meaning: A Bear Market is a period when investors are feeling pessimistic, and as a consequence, they are more likely to sell rather than buy shares.

Example sentence: "I should have sold those shares earlier, I knew it was a bear market."

Bears: Always Ready to Stand Their Ground

Always ready and prepared to step up and take action. These bears are certainly living up to their fearsome reputation.
Always ready and prepared to step up and take action. These bears are certainly living up to their fearsome reputation. | Source

Loaded for Bear

5. Are you up for this? Are you loaded For Bear?

Meaning: A way of saying that someone is ready for a fight. In a rage.

Example sentence: "They are armed to the teeth, they sure are loaded for bear."

To Bear Up

6. Don't be downhearted. You need to Bear up.

Meaning: A way of saying that you should remain in high spirits, even if things are not going well for you.

Example sentence: "Joey is bearing up well. Especially when you consider what she is going through."

To Grin and Bear Video

To Grin and Bear It

7. I know it's tough. But sometimes we just need to grin and bear it.

Meaning: To say that someone should put up with or endure something unpleasant with good humour.

Example Sentence: "I don't like having to do this anymore than you do, but I will just have to grin and bear it."

To Have a Bear By The Tail.

8. I've got this Bear by the tail.

This phrase suggests that a person has a significant or difficult decision to make.

Example Sentence: "I know that you find this a difficult thing to do, but you simply have to grab the bear by its tail and get it done."

Slick as Bear Grease.

9. He is as slick as Bear grease.

Meaning: That a person is a slick and smooth operator.

Like a Bear with a Sore Head

10. To be like a Bear with a sore head.

Meaning: To say that someone is in a lousy mood and mistreating others.

Example Sentence: "I don't know what's up with you this morning; you're like a bear with a sore head."

Like a bear with a sore head - idiom
Like a bear with a sore head - idiom

Bear Idiom #11

"To Bear a Grudge."

A way of saying that a person is angry about something and not willing to forget.

A Bear Poll

What are your thoughts on bears?

See results

I'm as Hungry as a Bear for More Idioms

12. Hungry as a Bear

Meaning: To be starving.

Example sentence: "I am ravenous this morning; I'm as hungry as a bear."

Gruff as a Bear

13. Oh my! Your as gruff as a Bear.

Meaning: To say that someone is unsociable or speaks in a very abrupt rude way.

Example sentence: "I'm annoyed with Anthony. He never says good morning or acknowledges me; he's as gruff as a bear most days."

Take the Bear by the Tooth

14. Have you got what it takes to take a Bear by the tooth?

This statement expresses the view that you have put yourself in a dangerous position.

Example sentence: "I know the snowfall made the roads treacherous, but I just took the bear by the tooth and drove anyhow."

Take the Bear by the Tooth

I'm not sure I would have what it takes to take these bears by the teeth.
I'm not sure I would have what it takes to take these bears by the teeth. | Source

As Cranky as a Bear with a Sore Paw.

15. To be as cranky as a Bear with a sore paw.

Meaning: To suggest that a person is very irritable.

Can You Bear to Watch This?

Comments

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    • Ben Reed profile imageAUTHOR

      Ben Reed 

      2 years ago from Redcar

      Thank you Asher for your comment. I will certainly try to address your request.

    • Ash Talk profile image

      Asher Kabeer 

      2 years ago from Rawalakot

      Great work. you should also add sentences of every idiom.

    • goldenrulecomics profile image

      goldenrulecomics 

      7 years ago from New Jersey

      Nicely done!

    • Ben Reed profile imageAUTHOR

      Ben Reed 

      7 years ago from Redcar

      @MaryMitchell: Thanks for your visit and comment - very much appreciated.

    • profile image

      MaryMitchell 

      7 years ago

      Bears are great and no danger to anyone, until we invade their space as we do with so many wild animals!

    • profile image

      Pangionedevelopers 

      8 years ago

      Great info here, I just went through your last 5 sites and I like'd them all

      David P here

    • profile image

      mermaidlife 

      8 years ago

      Bear in mind or is it - bear in mind. or how about bear necessities or is it - bare necessities. oh well I tried.

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      9 years ago

      I don't think I've ever heard "As busy as a hibernating bear" before, it certainly does paint a picture!

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