mother hen


A mother hen with chicks.


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mother hen (plural mother hens)

  1. (literally) A female chicken who bears eggs or chicks.
  2. (idiomatic) An outspoken and overprotective woman or person dealing with others' affairs.




mother hen (third-person singular simple present mother hens, present participle mother henning, simple past and past participle mother henned)

  1. Alternative form of mother-hen
    • 1990, Diane Ehrensaft, Parenting Together: Men and Women Sharing the Care of Their Children:
      Instead, the very "mother henning" implicit in their choice of "nurturance" over "intimacy" was what the they thought uniquely characterized their relationship to their child.
    • 2010, T.M. Nielsen, Equites, page 541:
      He's mother henning and driving me crazy.
    • 2011, Suzanne Forster, Unfinished Business:
      That was probably why the girls mother henned her a bit and sometimes made her feel like the runt of the litter.

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