don’t halloo till you are out of the wood

Do not exult until all danger or difficulty is past. Halloo literally means to shout in order to attract attention.

1770 B. FRANKLIN Papers (1973) XVIII. 356 This is Hollowing before you are out of the Wood.

1800 A. ADAMS Letter 13 Nov. (1848) 381 It is an old and a just proverb, ‘Never halloo until you are out of the woods.’

1866 C. KINGSLEY Hereward the Wake I. iii. Don’t holla till you are out of the wood. This is a night for praying rather than boasting.

1936 ‘E. C. R. LORAC’ Crime Counter Crime i. Don’t halloo till you’re out of the wood. I’ll bet my head to a china orange we shall have trouble before to-morrow night.

1947 M. LONG Dull Thud x. 99 ‘Don’t whistle till you’re out of the woods,’ I advised her. ‘The investigation hasn’t even begun.’


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • don't halloo till you're out of the wood — Keep quiet until you are sure you are safe • • • Main Entry: ↑halloo …   Useful english dictionary

  • out — see out of debt, out of danger out of sight, out of mind better be out of the world than out of the fashion there are as good fish in the sea as ever came out of it when the gorse is out of bloom, kissing’s out of fashion …   Proverbs new dictionary

  • wood — see fields have eyes, and woods have ears don’t halloo till you are out of the wood hunger drives the wolf out of the wood …   Proverbs new dictionary

  • halloo — see don’t halloo till you are out of the wood …   Proverbs new dictionary

  • Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs, Thematic Index — absence absence makes the heart grow fonder he who is absent is always in the wrong the best of friends must part blue are the hills that are far away distance lends enchantment to the view out of sight, out of mind …   Proverbs new dictionary

  • whistle — see don’t halloo till you are out of the wood a sow may whistle, though it has an ill mouth for it a whistling woman and a crowing hen are neither fit for God nor men it is a poor dog that’s not worth whistling for …   Proverbs new dictionary

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