Last modified on 7 October 2013, at 07:27

learn the ropes

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

Of nautical origin. The phrase "he knows the ropes" written on a seaman's discharge meant that he was inexperienced and only familiar with a ship's principal ropes.

  • 1981, Snelling, Charles, Nomenclature of Ships, Naval Sea Systems Command:

VerbEdit

learn the ropes

  1. To learn the basics or master introductory knowledge.
    Work slowly and cautiously until you have learned the ropes.

Related termsEdit

  • know the ropes
  • show one the ropes
  • teach one the ropes

TranslationsEdit