What does the idiom "Snowed under" mean?

The phrase Snowed under is often used in English, but what does this idiom mean? When idioms are used in the right situations, they strengthen communication and enrich the language. You can communicate more effectively by learning the meaning of Snowed under.

Meaning of "Snowed under"

Meaning

The idiom “snowed under” is used to describe someone who is overwhelmed by work or other responsibilities. It is often used to emphasize a very high volume of tasks that have to be completed. This idiom can also be used to describe the feeling of being buried under a lot of work or stress that seems like it will never be complete.

Etymology

The origins of this phrase are unclear but it is believed to have originated in the early 1800s. The phrase may have been derived from the idea of a “snowdrift”. In winter, when snow drifts pile up high, it can seem impossible to clear away the snow and progress on. This feeling of being overwhelmed by a high volume of tasks may have been the inspiration for this phrase.

Usage

The phrase "snowed under" is commonly used to describe someone in a state of being overwhelmed by large amounts of tasks. It can be used to express sympathy for someone in this situation or to emphasize the extremity of their situation. It is often used in different forms such as “I am so snowed under right now” or “I am completely snowed under by this project”.

Example Sentences

  • I am snowed under with work and don't know how I will manage it all.
  • I feel completely snowed under by all the things I have to do this week.
  • She is snowed under with exams, so I don't think she'll be able to come to the party.
  • I am so snowed under with all these tasks that I have no idea how to get started.
  • He is so snowed under with work that he can't even manage to take a break.

The meanings of the words in the "Snowed under" 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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