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Fill in the blank: I can’t figure out _____ gave me this gift.

Idioms about fetch

    fetch and carry, to perform menial tasks.

Origin of fetch

First recorded before 1000; Middle English fecchen, facchen, Old English fecc(e)an, fæccan “to bring back”; akin to German fassen “to grasp”

synonym study for fetch

1. See bring.


fetcher, noun

Other definitions for fetch (2 of 2)

[ fech ]
/ fɛtʃ /


Origin of fetch

First recorded in 1780–90; origin unknown; perhaps short for fetch-life one sent to fetch the soul of a dying person
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022


What else does fetch mean?

Fetch is slang for “cool” or “awesome” and is not, in fact, from England.

It started as a joke in the movie Mean Girls, only to catch on off-screen.

Where does fetch come from?

Fetch dates back to before the year 1000, when it showed up in Old English as fecc(e)an. It’s related to the German fassen which means to grasp. Back then (and now, if you’re going with the typical definition), fetch typically meant to get or return with an object.

It wasn’t until April 2004, when the movie Mean Girls was released in theaters, that fetch the slang word totally happened.

The movie about a group of high school girls launched the phrase so fetch into the lexicon, thanks to character Gretchen Weiners (played by Lacey Chabert) who spent much of the flick declaring things she liked were “so fetch.” In a now iconic scene, head mean girl Regina George (played by Rachel McAdams) snaps at Gretchen, telling her to “stop trying to make fetch happen.”

Mean Girls creator Tina Fey has said she’s sorry for adding the word to the movie, telling the Today Show, “I want to apologize to the world for fetch. I didn’t mean for it to happen.”

But it looks like Gretchen got the last laugh.

So fetch has caught on, especially among fans of the cult classic. Mean Girls has since been turned into a Broadway show where so fetch is said multiple times per showing.

How is fetch used in real life?

The internet loves to call its favorite things “so fetch.” This goes double for anything that’s pink on a Wednesday—a nod to another famous Mean Girls quote.

When things aren’t so fetch, fans are using the hashtag #MakeFetchHappen.

More examples of fetch:

“In “Mean Girls,” Gretchen Wieners didn’t make “fetch” (for the non-Plastics among you: fetch roughly equates to cool/awesome) happen, much to the satisfaction of queen bee Regina George. But a decade later, the social media age has.”
—Carla Correa, FiveThirtyEight, August 2014


This content is not meant to be a formal definition of this term. Rather, it is an informal summary that seeks to provide supplemental information and context important to know or keep in mind about the term’s history, meaning, and usage.

How to use fetch in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for fetch (1 of 2)

/ (fɛtʃ) /

verb (mainly tr)

Word Origin for fetch

Old English feccan; related to Old Norse feta to step, Old High German sih fazzōn to climb

British Dictionary definitions for fetch (2 of 2)

/ (fɛtʃ) /

the ghost or apparition of a living person

Word Origin for fetch

C18: of unknown origin
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