What does the idiom "Add insult to injury" mean?

Although the meanings of the words in them do not make any sense when examined one by one, the word groups that are shaped according to the cultural roots of the language and that make sense as a whole are called idioms. Add insult to injury meaning, in what situations is it used?

Meaning of "Add insult to injury"


The phrase "add insult to injury" is an English idiom used to describe when someone makes a situation even worse than it already is. It suggests that a second wrong has been committed, in addition to the initial wrong, and that the victim of the wrong has faced more suffering because of it.


The origins of the phrase "add insult to injury" can be traced back to the 14th century Latin phrase "injuria cum injuria addita." This phrase is believed to have been coined by the Roman poet Juvenal and means "with an injustice added to an existing injustice." It was eventually translated into the English phrase "adding insult to injury."


The phrase "add insult to injury" is generally used to express the idea that someone has compounded a bad situation by making it worse. It can be used in a variety of situations and contexts, including conversations about a current problem or situation, to describe a difficult situation someone might be facing, or to describe a situation in which one person has wronged another in some way.

Example Sentences

  • After our team lost the championship game, the coach added insult to injury by blaming the players for their mistakes.
  • Jane was already having a difficult time with her job and then her boss added insult to injury by asking her to do an extra project.
  • Jim felt like he'd been wronged by his colleague and then it was added insult to injury when the colleague started spreading rumors about Jim.

The meanings of the words in the "Add insult to injury" idiom

From One Language to Another: Idioms in Translation

Translating idioms from one language to another can be a tricky task, as the cultural context behind an idiom can be difficult to capture. For example, the French phrase "avoir le cafard" translates to "to have the cockroach," which means to feel down or depressed. Similarly, the Chinese idiom "????" (j?ng d? zh? w?) translates to "frog at the bottom of a well," which refers to someone with a narrow view of the world.


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