to have an axe to grind

Idiom Definition 1

Idiom Definition - have an axe to grind

"to have an axe to grind"

to want to have an argument or discussion about something


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Definition 2

Idiom Definition - have an axe to grind

"to have an axe to grind"

to have a personal agenda or hidden motive for doing something


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - have an axe to grind

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  Here comes trouble. Jim is marching into the boss's office. Looks like he is upset about something.

Colleague 2:  Jim has an axe to grind with the boss. He is quite angry with the way he was suddenly and without notice removed from his biggest account.

Colleague 1:  Should be an interesting argument to watch.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - have an axe to grind

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  Ruth sure seems to spend a lot of her free time with environmental protests. She also donates a good deal of money to environmental protection causes. Does she have family members who work for environmental groups? Or maybe she is looking for a job in the field herself? Or maybe she thinks it will improve her social status?

Friend 2:  No. Ruth has absolutely no axe to grind. She has no hidden agenda. She is genuinely concerned with the fate of our planet.

to have an axe to grind - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   297   click for frequency by country

to have an axe to grind - Gerund Form:

Having an axe to grind about his grades, the student marched into the professor's office for a confrontation.

Having an axe to grind, his motives were suspect.

to have an axe to grind - Examples:

1)  ... didn't trust Mr Latham's account of a second search because the staffer had an axe to grind after missing out on a promotion.

2)  ... General Practitioner, whom I have been with for decades. He has no axe to grind. He has no product to sell. His only interest is my health.

3)  ... the prosecutor said this was simply not true and the 24-year-old victims had no "axe to grind", and no reason to lie to the court.

4)  They only speak when it is convenient or when they have an axe to grind and rarely out of patriotism.

5)  ... entering employment in either the state or private sector, do so bearing an axe to grind. They take it out on the poor unsuspecting public, family members ...

6)  ... appreciate your designs since you cant be everything to everybody however once they have an axe to grind with the quality of your tailoring then you are really and thoroughly screwed.

7)  Succession experts advise that an independent person with no axe to grind for either party was often a good way to get the discussion on ...

8)  The average student without any ideological axe to grind would rather come to his or her own conclusions than being told what ...

9)  ... the speech, particularly the acknowledgements, gave the impression he still had an axe to grind with those who opposed him within his party.

10)  But to those with no axe to grind she is, by all accounts, charming, if quite formidable.

11)  It is a real shame that one or two people, obviously with an axe to grind, can create such bad feeling without giving the new scheme a chance.

12)  ... a tactically flawless display that shut up all of his critics bar those with an axe to grind or a limited knowledge of football.

13)  ... can't really talk about it anymore because I'll sound like I have an axe to grind and I don't.

14)  They don't purposefully do wrong. This is just that people have an axe to grind and are targeting ...

15)  I am not fighting individuals, I have no personal axe to grind. I am fighting for the legitimate rights of ...

16)  ... is very reassuring to get the backing of people who are non-political and have no axe to grind.

17)  ... are outlandish and baseless because individuals behind them had an axe to grind, ...

18)  ... he had no axe to grind with anybody and would never interfere in traditional matters.

19)  The chiefs ostensibly had an axe to grind with Nana for not having their prominent sons and daughters awarded positions of power.

20)  ... on some specific societal plague has turned into a contagion. Anyone who has an axe to grind, a long-held grudge or a motive, can find use in that ...