Poor as a Church Mouse

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Poor as a Church Mouse : Phrases


Extremely poor; impoverished; insolvent; poor but proud.


The owner, he said, was once
poor as a churchmouse.


This 17th century expression is most likely derived from a tale which recounts the plight of a mouse that attempted to find food in a Church. Since most Churches of that time did not have kitchens, the proud mouse found it difficult to survive since its pickings were slim at best.

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