General Question

Thangboy's avatar

What does the phrase 'missing the woods for the trees' mean? How did it originate?

Asked by Thangboy (4points) June 29th, 2007
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

4 Answers

Tank8131's avatar

I think it means that we sometime's get caught in all the little, nitpicky, or pointless things in some situations and fail to see the bigger picture.

...sometimes people focus on smaller issues so that they miss the big picture. Literally: A forest is comprised of many trees. If someone was looking for a forest but said "I cant see the forest! All I can see is a bunch of trees!" If they stepped back and observed the whole situation, they would find the forest they were looking for.

Tank8131's avatar

Oh, and it's a proverb.

ava's avatar

I've never heard "missing the woods for the trees", however, I have heard "You can't see the forest for the trees." I took this to mean you're missing the bigger picture, or not appreciating what you have aka "looking a gift horse in the mouth."

niemand's avatar

I don't know what it means, but its origin is easy: It definitely grew in the wood.

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