piss and vinegar


piss and vinegar


  • to self-reference someone who is in a bad mood and ready to fight.
  • to refer to someone who is less than desirable.
  • to refer to someone or a group of people in fighting spirit or full of aggression.
  • to be rowdy
  • to be boisterous
  • to be full of youthful energy, especially an elderly person.
  • to be very energetic and quite aggressive.

Example Sentences

  1. During the invasion, the soldiers were full of piss and vinegar, and therefore they went straight into the front lines.
  2. These youths are full of piss and vinegar since they never seem to stop making a noise.
  3. Our team lacked the skills essential to defeating our cross-town opponents despite the fact that we entered the game full of piss and vinegar.
  4. I had to remember how piss and vinegar a child can be at six in the morning after having my own kids.
  5. James was full of piss and vinegar and that is just one of the many reasons why we will miss him badly.
  6. I’ve never had a conversation with my uncle that didn’t turn into an argument. He’s all piss and vinegar.
  7. Rugby fans tend to have a reputation for being full of piss and vinegar.


The exact period in which the phrase and idiom “piss and vinegar” was coined is not known. It is believed that this phrase was coined somewhere in the 1800s. However, the earliest citation of this idiom and phrase can be traced back to a 1936 novel by John Steinbeck known as In Dubious Battle.

“Listen, mister,” London said, “them guys is so full of piss and vinegar they’ll skin you if you show that slick suit outside.”

Additionally, there was another citation of this idiom in a 1938 novel known as The Grapes of Wrath by the same novelist, John Steinbeck.

Share your opinions1 Opinion

“Good old” country bumpkin, vinegar having (internally) processed lots of home-brewed cider (aka drunk), and piss relating to the diuretic effects of alcohol… drunk, disinhibited, and ready for a fight

‒ Andre Piver February 25, 2024

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