out of the mouths of babes

Young and inexperienced persons often can be remarkably wise, as in She's only six but she said, quite rightly, that Harry was afraid of the sitter—out of the mouths of babes, Mother said. This expression is a shortening and revision of expressions in the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. In Psalms 8:2, God ordains strength out of the mouth of babes and sucklings; in Matthew 21:16, praise comes from this source. Later generations changed strength and praise to wisdom.

Nearby words

  1. out of the corner of one's eye,
  2. out of the frying pan into the fire,
  3. out of the frying pan, into the fire,
  4. out of the hole,
  5. out of the loop,
  6. out of the ordinary,
  7. out of the picture,
  8. out of the question,
  9. out of the rain,
  10. out of the running

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