Skip to Content

EnglishClub
Home Learn English Teach English MyEnglishClub

A watched pot never boils

Meaning: If you want to heat water until it boils, and you watch it while you wait, then it seems to take a very long time. In the same way, anything that we wait for with eager attention seems to take a very long time: like waiting for someone to arrive, waiting for the phone to ring, waiting for a letter to come.

Note: watch (verb) = look at; observe with attention | watched = looked at; attentively observed | pot (noun) = a container for cooking or storage | boil (verb) = reach a very high temperature (at which water turns to vapour) | Alternative version: "A watched kettle never boils."

Quick Quiz:

When we say that "a watched pot never boils" we mean that it
  1. seems to take forever
  2. does take forever
  3. never takes forever

This entry is in the following categories:

Terms | Privacy | Contact | Report error

EnglishClub Group EnglishClub EasyEnglish ESLDepot Teflnet

© 1997-2014 EnglishClub