What does the idiom "Don't put all your eggs in one basket" 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. Don't put all your eggs in one basket meaning, in what situations is it used?

Meaning of "Don't put all your eggs in one basket"


The phrase, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” is a phrase known to many English speakers around the world and is used as a warning against putting too much trust or effort into a single endeavor. In other words, it could be summarized as “do not risk too much in one venture”. This phrase is intended to make one think twice before taking a chance and putting all their resources into a single endeavor.


The origin of the phrase dates back to William Cobbett’s book “Rural Rides,” published in 1830. It is likely that the phrase was passed down through generations given its ubiquity in the English language. It is also possible that the phrase originated in the Latin phrase “frangere nolite omnia ovum in unum cistam” which translates to “do not break all the eggs into one basket”. Though the precise origin is not known, these two potential etymologies are widely accepted.


The phrase “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” is most commonly used to advise against overly risky behavior. This phrase is commonly seen in situations such as investing money, applying to jobs, and personal relationships. In addition to its implications of risk, this phrase serves as a reminder to be judicious with one’s resources, especially when it comes to future prospects. The phrase is also occasionally used in its more literal sense, often in the context of transporting eggs.

Example Sentences

  • “I was about to put all my savings into a risky investment, but I remember my parents’ advice to not put all my eggs in one basket.”
  • “My mother always told me that I should diversify my portfolio and not put all my eggs in one basket.”
  • “We need to be careful about the eggs; don’t put all of them in one basket.”

The meanings of the words in the "Don't put all your eggs in one basket" idiom

Idioms have a common language

"The early bird catches the worm" is an English idiom that means that those who wake up early and start their day early are more likely to succeed. A similar idiom in Spanish is "El que madruga, Dios le ayuda," which translates to "God helps those who rise early." This idiom emphasizes the importance of starting the day early in order to achieve success.


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