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bird of passage

noun
  1. a bird that migrates seasonally.
  2. a transient or migratory person.
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Origin of bird of passage

First recorded in 1785–95
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for bird of passage

bird of passage

noun
  1. a bird that migrates seasonally
  2. a transient person or one who roams about
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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

Idioms and Phrases with bird of passage

bird of passage

A transient, one who is here today and gone tomorrow. For example, Mary moves nearly every year; she's a true bird of passage. This phrase transfers the literal meaning of a migrating bird to human behavior. [Second half of 1700s]

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.