Proverb – When the cat’s away, the mice will play or While the cat’s away, the mice will play.

Meaning – If the person in charge of a group of people is not there, the group of people will do as they please. If a teacher or boss is not around, the students or workers will misbehave and play around – they will forget about their duties.

The cat can also refer to a partner in a relationship, the mouse being the other partner. This phrase can sometimes be used to mean that one partner is cheating on the other partner when they are away somewhere.

Cat Expressions:

In The News:

“That said, when the cat’s away, the mice will play. So, with the Fed’s next meeting taking place on March 20-21, and the stock market currently oversold after a dismal month of February, the odds favor a short-term bounce in stocks.”

What is a proverb?

proverb is short, useful and well known expression. A proverb will state a general or obvious truth or a useful piece of advice. A proverb might teach you how to have a good life. A proverb may teach you to be healthy or kind.


  • Is there a similar proverb in your culture?

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