What does the idiom "Get wind of something" mean?

Are you using the idiom Get wind of something but not sure about its meaning? Using idioms, which are important elements of spoken and written language, in the right place strengthens your language skills. Examine the meaning of the Get wind of something idiom and the situations in which it is used.

Meaning of "Get wind of something"


The idiom ‘get wind of something’ is used to describe when someone obtains knowledge or hears gossip about something. It usually involves hearing information through unofficial sources that is not officially confirmed or validated, but is commonly shared by many people. It can also refer to when someone has come to learn about an event or development before anyone else.


The phrase ‘get wind of something’ originated in the early 1600s and was used to describe when hunters or sailors found out about land or a location with the help of wind. Sailors would follow the wind to get closer to where they wanted to go, and hunters would use the wind’s direction to locate the animal they were hunting. Throughout the centuries, the phrase has been modified and used in different contexts with the same meaning.


This phrase is commonly used in casual conversations and can be used in both informal and formal settings. It is used to describe when someone has obtained information from unofficial sources. It can also be used to describe when someone has come to know or learn about something before anyone else.

Example Sentences

  • I heard that Rebecca has been promoted to manager, but I had gotten wind of it weeks ago.
  • My neighbor got wind of our plans to buy a new house, and now the whole town knows.
  • We managed to get wind of their next move before they announced it publicly.
  • The news of his engagement spread quickly once people got wind of it.

The meanings of the words in the "Get wind of something" idiom

The Global Spread of English Idioms

As English has become a global language, its idioms have spread far beyond the borders of the UK and USA. For instance, the idiom "beat around the bush" has equivalents in many other languages, such as "tourner autour du pot" in French and "dar vueltas al asunto" in Spanish. Meanwhile, other idioms have been adapted for local contexts, such as the Russian idiom "?? ???? ???????" (ne svoya rubashka), which translates to "not one's own shirt," meaning to be in an uncomfortable or unfamiliar situation.


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