hell has no fury like a woman scorned

No anger is worse than that of a jilted woman. For example, Nancy has nothing good to say about Tom—hell has no fury, you know. This term is a shortening of William Congreve's lines, “Heav'n has no rage, like love to hatred turn'd, nor Hell a fury like a woman scorn'd” (The Mourning Bride, 1697). Similar lines appear in several plays of the same period. Today the proverb is often shortened even more, as in the example.


Nearby words

  1. helium i,
  2. helium ii,
  3. helix,
  4. hell,
  5. hell gate,
  6. hell hath no fury like a woman scorned,
  7. hell of a,
  8. hell on wheels,
  9. hell or high water, come,
  10. hell to pay

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