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wild-goose chase

[wahyld-goos] /ˈwaɪldˈgus/
a wild or absurd search for something nonexistent or unobtainable:
a wild-goose chase looking for a building long demolished.
any senseless pursuit of an object or end; a hopeless enterprise:
Her scheme of being a movie star is a wild-goose chase.
Origin of wild-goose chase
First recorded in 1585-95 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for wild-goose chase
Historical Examples
  • Joe was up to snuff and sent the boys on what he considered a wild-goose chase.

    Australia Revenged Boomerang
  • Who wants to be enthusiastic on a wild-goose chase like this?

  • On his way back to town from this wild-goose chase, he heard the sound of hoofs.

    Nan of Music Mountain Frank H. Spearman
  • "I apprehend we shall have a wild-goose chase of it," rejoined Bob.

  • I was half afraid that you had come out here on a wild-goose chase.'

  • But why then had he been lured off on a wild-goose chase all the way to Ipswich?

    Dulcibel Henry Peterson
  • I'm going with Hiram on a wild-goose chase, and I'm hoping to have some fun.

    Owen Clancy's Happy Trail Burt L. Standish
  • While you have been on a wild-goose chase she has been here all the time.

    A Coin of Edward VII

    Fergus Hume
  • I would not see my client's money wasted in such a wild-goose chase.

    Orley Farm

    Anthony Trollope
  • Could it be that after all they had been on a wild-goose chase?

    The Secret Wireless

    Lewis E. Theiss
British Dictionary definitions for wild-goose chase

wild-goose chase

an absurd or hopeless pursuit, as of something unattainable
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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