the winter of our discontent

A phrase from the historical play King Richard the Third, by William Shakespeare; it describes a civil war in England.

Nearby words

  1. the three musketeers,
  2. the ticket,
  3. the ugly american,
  4. the voice of one crying in the wilderness,
  5. the western wall,
  6. the wiser,
  7. the wish is father of the deed,
  8. the wolf shall also dwell with the lamb,
  9. the works,
  10. the world must be made safe for democracy


“The winter of our discontent” has come to suggest disaffection in general. The phrase served as the title for a book by John Steinbeck.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.