Posted by Shae on April 23, 2004
In Reply to: Have a bone to pick with you! posted by SR on April 23, 2004
: : Hi! Can you please tell me what this means and how it originated? Thank you very much... Sax
: : "Bone to pick," dates back to the 16th century, simply refers to a dog chewing endlessly on, and "picking clean," a large bone. A "bone to pick" is thus a subject or issue that is expected to require considerable discussion or argument. A similar phrase, "bone of contention," meaning an issue over which two people argue, also dates back to the 1500s and refers, appropriately, to two dogs fighting over an especially choice bone.
It has a slightly different meaning here in Ireland. 'I have a bone to pick with you' means 'I believe you have done me wrong and I want to know why.'