The idiomatic phrase “under the weather” is a phrase you will hear or see quite often in everyday conversation and writing. Here you will find the meaning of this phrase and the information regarding its origin. You will also find examples of how to properly use this phrase in conversations/statements and alternative ways to say the phrase while still conveying the same meaning.
Under The Weather
Under The Weather Meaning
The phrase “under the weather” means that someone is not feeling well or that someone is feeling ill.
Origin of this idiomatic expression
The idiom “under the weather” most likely finds its origin from the maritime industry. It is said that sailors who felt ill at sea would be made to go below deck to rest until they felt better. Therefore, they were under the deck and out of the harsh weather. The phrase, in its entirety, used to be “under the weather bow” meaning they were sheltered from the worst of the weather. The phrase was shortened to “under the weather” and its first use in print was in 1865. It is now used to describe anyone who is sick, not just those at sea.
“Under The Weather” Examples
A statement made during a local charity event regarding a speaker who was supposed to come and address the audience.
- “Mr. McCall will not be joining us today. I know it says on his program he was supposed to be here, but he is feeling a bit under the weather and was not able to make it.”
A statement made by a celebrity during an interview on the red carpet.
- “I was not sure I would make it tonight. I have been feeling rather under the weather for the last week or so. I just can’t seem to shake this cold I have, but here I am!”
A conversation between two friends meeting at the mall to go shopping.
- Friend 1: Is Elizabeth still coming?
- Friend 2: I don’t think so. She went home early today from school.
- Friend 1: Oh, I didn’t know. I hope she is okay.
- Friend 2: Yeah, I think she is. She is just feeling under the weather. She can come with us next weekend.
- Friend 1: Okay! Let’s go shopping!
A conversation between a husband and wife.
- Husband: Hey hon, I am home.
- Wife: Well, you are home early. Is everything okay?
- Husband: I am feeling a bit under the weather. I am going to take a shower and lay down. My head is pounding!
- You’ve been under the weather for some days now; why don’t you see a doctor?
- She’s been a bit under the weather recently.
- I hear you’ve been a bit under the weather. Are you feeling better now?
- Mike’s feeling a little under the weather so he couldn’t come tonight.
- I began to feel under the weather on Thursday morning after leaving Haslemere.
Other Ways to Say “Under The Weather”
As with all English idioms, there are plenty of other ways to say “under the weather” and still convey the same meaning. Some alternative ways to say this phrase include:
- I feel sick
- I am not feeling well
- I feel a little out of it