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The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side

A large field of grass. The grass is always greener

The Grass is Always Greener Definition

  • The Grass is always greener on the other side. There is always someone who seems to be in a better situation than you, even if they really are not.
  • The choice you DIDN’T make may always seem to have been the right one.

Grass is Always Greener Examples

  • Ted moved to Florida, but he always says he misses the country and wants to go back to Arizona. The grass is always greener on the other side!
  • Ted regrets not moving to Florida, he always talks about wanting to sit on the beaches, go fishing and check out the night clubs. Oh well, the grass is always greener on the other side!


Please Sir, Can I have some Momoa

“I’m sure all actors have trouble. The guy who always plays the funny guy, he wants to be taken seriously. And there’s the action guy who wants to do serious stuff. Everyone’s grass is greener.”

-Jason Momoa

Jason Momoa is an American actor best known for his role as Aquaman in multiple DC live action films and also as Khal Drogo leader of the Dothraki in the Game of Thrones T.V series. Fun fact, One of Momoa’s most distinct facial features, a manly scar which passes through his left eyebrow was the result of a slash from a broken beer bottle during a tavern brawl in the Bird’s Cafe in Hollywood, California.

portrait photo of Jason Momoa. Grass is always greener
Jason Momoa: Manly man

Have Some Salman, Sohn!

“The grass is always greener on the other side – until you get there and see it’s AstroTurf. Symbols are never reality. Someone might have amassed material success and fame, but that doesn’t mean they’re happy. So, don’t go judging a person’s life by the cover.”

-Karen Salmansohn

Karen Salmansohn is a best selling author of multiple self-help books about topics ranging from meditation, relationships, anxiety amd emotional eating. She’s been a columnist for big names like Oprah, CNN and the Huffington Post.

Grass is always Greener Origin

Definitive Origin

“The crop of corn is always more fertile in the fields of other people; and the herds of our neighbours have their udders more distended”

-Ars Amatoria (Book of Love) 2 CE, Ovid (translated by Henry T. Riley) 1885

Ovid is a famous ancient Roman poet who along with Virgil & Horus make up the three contemporary poets of Latin Literature. Ovid has written many well known poems and epics in his time ranging in subject from Mythology to seduction and romance.

A statue of Ovid. grass is always greener
A statue of Ovid


“The corne in an other mans ground semeth euer more fertyll and plentifull then doth oure own.”

-Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus, 1545

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus Otherwise known as Erasmus of Rotterdam was a dutch philosopher and christian humanist who existed in the latter 15th and early 16th centuries. Erasmus is widely considered to be the greatest scholar of the northern Renaissance. Named after Saint Erasmus otherwise known as Saint Elmo (yes ‘Saint Elmo’s Fire’ Elmo).

Saint Elmo is the patron saint of sailors. In prayer his name is also used to relieve abdominal ailments. It’s ironic then that Erasmus tend to suffer from gall stones.

Although Erasmus father Gerard was a catholic priest his parents were never married. They both died from the plague while he was young. Erasmus became known as a canon regular at St. Augustine in Stein, south Holland. There he was ordained in the catholic priesthood at the age of 25. While in Stein Erasmus fell in love with Servatius Rogerus a fellow canon but relations didn’t last. The Bishop of Cambrai, Henry of Bergen later offered the post of secretary position to Erasmus. Pope Leo X also granted him a permanent suspension from his priestly duties. An enormous privilege at the time.

Erasmu-taz Part 2

Erasmus studied at the University of Paris, he was nomadic in his activity moving from Paris to Belgium, Basil and England. He became the Lady Margaret’s Professor of Divinity at the University of Cambridge and stayed at Queen’s College Cambridge from 1510-1515. Erasmus complained bitterly about conveniences and comforts that Queen’s college lacked. Especially the colleges lack of decent wine. The Dutch philosopher suffered from gall stones for which wine was a common cure at the time.

Preferring to live an independent lifestyle dedicated to his studies he turned down many highly valued roles in the many institutions he worked. Erasmus died of a sudden attack of dysentary on a visit to Basel in 1536, his last words according to his friend Beatus Rhenanus was simply ‘Dear God’.

A painting of Erasmus of Rotterdam. grass is always greener
Erasmus of Rotterdam

Literal Origin

“The mines are wonderful, but probably not so wonderful as represented. Grass is always greener, you know, further away.”

-The Public Press, 1897

An excerpt from The Public Press, a Pennsylvania based newspaper contains the earliest written record I’ve found of the modern phrasing although incomplete. It’s very likely that the ‘grass is greener’ variant was already in use at this point, likely for years.

Grass is Always Greener Media

“Oh the grass is always greener
In the other fellow’s yard.”

-Richard A. Whiting & Raymond B. Egan, 1924