shut the stable door after the horse has bolted

shut the stable door after the horse has bolted
I
try to avert something bad or unwelcome when it is already too late to do so
II
try to avoid or prevent something bad or unwelcome when it is already too late to do so

Useful english dictionary. 2012.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • shut the stable door when the horse has bolted —    If you shut the stable door after the horse has bolted, you try to prevent something bad from happening when it is already too late.     Jack decided to insure the contents of his apartment after it was burgled.     Now that s shutting the… …   English Idioms & idiomatic expressions

  • shut (or bolt) the stable door after the horse has bolted — Brit. try to prevent something undesirable when it is already too late to do so. → stable …   English new terms dictionary

  • it is too late to shut the stable-door after the horse has bolted — In early use the proverb referred to horse stealing; has bolted is a modern substitution for the traditional is stolen. Cf. medieval Fr. a tart ferme on l’estable, quant li chevaux est perduz, the stable is shut too late, when the horse is lost.… …   Proverbs new dictionary

  • stable door — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms stable door : singular stable door plural stable doors 1) a door on a stable 2) a door in two halves, with a top part that can be left open when the bottom part is shut • close the stable door after the horse… …   English dictionary

  • stable door — /ˈsteɪbəl dɔ/ (say staybuhl daw) noun Also, Dutch door. 1. a door cut through horizontally at half its height, with each half separately hung. –phrase 2. shut the stable door after the horse has bolted, to take preventive action after a disaster… …   Australian-English dictionary

  • stable-door — see it is too late to shut the stable door after the horse has bolted …   Proverbs new dictionary

  • stable — [[t]ste͟ɪb(ə)l[/t]] ♦♦ stabler, stablest, stables, stabling, stabled 1) ADJ GRADED If something is stable, it is not likely to change or come to an end suddenly. The price of oil should remain stable for the rest of 1992. ...a stable marriage.… …   English dictionary

  • stable — sta|ble1 W3 [ˈsteıbəl] adj [Date: 1200 1300; : Old French; Origin: estable, from Latin stabilis, from stare to stand ] 1.) steady and not likely to move or change ≠ ↑unstable →↑stability ▪ A wide base will make the structure much more stable. in… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • stable — 1 adjective 1 steady and not likely to move or change: Be careful, that ladder isn t stable. | a stable marriage | a politically stable country 2 calm, reasonable, and not easy to upset: Norman s a bit neurotic, but his wife s a very stable… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • horse — see you can take a horse to the water, but you can’t make him drink don’t change horses in mid stream England is the paradise of women, the hell of horses, and the purgatory of servants never look a gift horse in the mouth a good horse cannot be… …   Proverbs new dictionary

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