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"Dying on the vine"

Posted by Bruce Kahl on November 25, 2005

In Reply to: "Dying on the vine" posted by Nadine on November 25, 2005

: "Dying on the vine" I heard it used by a traffic court judge in reference to a misdemeanor case. I want to know what it means. I've heard it used in other situations not related to legal situations. Does anyone know what it means, or if there is a special legal meaning?

A vine is the part of a plant, usually a vegetable or fruit plant, that supports the fruit as it is growing.

When the fruit is ripe and ready to be eaten someone takes the fruit off the vine.

If the fruit is left too long on the vine after it ripens,it starts to spoil and rot and wither away.

So if something is "dying on the vine" then it is starting to wither away and disappear.

I don't think the phrase has any particular legal meaning.

Maybe the judge was referring to a case which has been scheduled,rescheduled and postponed so many times that the case is now dying on the vine or about to be abandoned by the prosecution.