What does the idiom "Give someone the benefit of the doubt" 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. Give someone the benefit of the doubt meaning, in what situations is it used?
Meaning of "Give someone the benefit of the doubt"
The phrase 'give someone the benefit of the doubt' is used to express the notion of 'giving trust' to someone, even if it may seem unlikely. It suggests that you are willing to take someone at their word, even if there is a lack of evidence to prove they are telling the truth. In essence, it is a polite way of saying that you are willing to trust someone even if it seems unlikely.
The phrase 'give the benefit of the doubt' originated during the Middle Ages in England. The phrase was used in criminal trials as a way to give the accused a chance to explain themselves before being convicted. The phrase was also used to express a sense of hope that the accused would be acquitted, despite the lack of convincing evidence.
The phrase 'give someone the benefit of the doubt' has come to be used more generally in everyday life, often in relation to people that one has never met. It is used when trying to decide whether or not to trust someone and when there is not enough evidence to form a solid opinion. In this context, the phrase suggests that it is better to assume that someone is telling the truth, even if it seems unlikely.
- I don't have enough evidence to prove what he said is true, but I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt.
- She didn't give me any proof that she was telling the truth but I decided to give her the benefit of the doubt.
- I don't know what happened but I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he's innocent.
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.