bone of contention

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - bone of contention

"bone of contention"

a topic of dispute


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - bone of contention

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  How are labor negotiations going?

Colleague 2:  Pretty well actually. Both sides have agreed on almost all the issues. There is just one area that is becoming a bone of contention.

Colleague 1:  What's the dispute?

Colleague 2:  It is the lack of safety features on the older machines in the factory. Labor is insisting that we either retrofit the machines or replace them. Management contends that the money is just not there for such a huge undertaking.

Colleague 1:  And I suppose this issue will stop a contract from being ratified?

Colleague 2:  Yes. It is definitely a problem.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - bone of contention

A couple are talking ...

Wife:  But she is such a beautiful dog. I really don't want to have her sterilized.

Husband:  We have talked about his so many times. We really have no plans to breed her and every time she goes into heat, it is impossible to take her for a walk without attracting every stray male dog for miles around.

Wife:  I am getting tired of arguing about this every six months.

Husband:  And I am getting tired of dealing with all the trouble.

Wife:  Well, I am tired of this bone of contention between us. We really need to solve this disagreement.

bone of contention - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   734   click for frequency by country

bone of contention - Gerund Form:

There is no gerund form for bone of contention.

bone of contention - Examples:

1)  ... finally came in the form of anger over ticket prices; an understandable bone of contention considering the economic situation as well as the uncertainty of the Isles situation.

2)  ... adding the 24-hour duty free limit was a frequent bone of contention.

3)  Who gets what is always the biggest bone of contention in a divorce. 

4)  This was a position hotly disputed by the slave states and a bone of contention for more than a decade between the South and the North.

5)  Whose job is harder? It's a bone of contention for many married couples who are parents.

6)  It was only a few lines but it proved to be a bone of contention that festered in some minds, prompting some rather smug responses when ...

7)  Gibraltar's status as a tax haven is also a bone of contention for the Spanish.

8)  Exactly how many political prisoners remain behind bars has become a major bone of contention.

9)  But here is my biggest bone of contention. We have not been back since 1972. This does not make any sense ...

10)  The bone of contention for the US car industry is the thicket of fiddly and difficult domestic regulations that ...

11)  ... a restless empty-nester who brings home a stray dog that becomes a major bone of contention with his wife.

12)  The reason why life was created has been a bone of contention among scientists and scholars for centuries.

13)  Even the language Jesus spoke has been a bone of contention: Hebrew? Aramaic? Greek?

14)  Furthermore, it made " yellow rain " specifically the bone of contention, which caused people to overlook a number of other important things: ...

15)  In South Africa, the singing of "struggle songs" remains a bone of contention.

16)  Yet food was a bone of contention between mother and daughter. While Nigella is famously proud of her curves and a ...

17)  ... her salary was double that of her husband's - became a major bone of contention in the marriage and the couple split when their son was five. 

18)  The second bone of contention is about politicians who don't keep their promises.

19)  Within anthropology, ethics is a serious bone of contention. Anthropologists have written at length about the problems inherent in codifying a set of ...

20)  One area often proving to be a huge bone of contention between students and teaching staff is that of assessment feedback, notably the rate of ...