coals to Newcastle

English edit

Etymology edit

Newcastle upon Tyne (in Britain) and Newcastle (in Australia) were major coal-exporting cities, so sending coal there would be pointless.

Pronunciation edit

  • (file)

Noun edit

coals to Newcastle pl (plural only)

  1. (idiomatic) A pointless venture, in the sense of sending something to a place where it is made, or where they already have an abundance.
    Synonym: owls to Athens

Related terms edit

Further reading edit