ab ovo usque ad mala

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search



Literally, “from the egg to the apples”, from the traditional foods that began and ended a Roman supper.


  • (Classical) IPA(key): /ab ˈo.woː ˈus.kʷe ad ˈmaː.la/, [ab ˈɔ.woː ˈʊs.kᶣɛ ad ˈmaː.ɫa]


ab ovō usque ad māla

  1. (idiomatic) from the beginning to the end
    • 1843, Friedrich H. C. Düsterdieck, Quae de Ignatianarum epistolarum authentia, page 31.
      Desperatam vero isti loco adhibet medicinam Meierus, com quasi recentiora assumenta ejusmodi ampullas jubeat resecari; toti enim isti capiti brevior textus ita substratus est, ut ab ovo usque ad mala continua interpretatione amplificetur, atque congeries ista plane integra, quae quantaque sit, videatur.
      (please add an English translation of this quote)
    • 1999, David Foster Wallace, "Authority and American Usage"
      • A Dictionary of Modern American Usage has no Editorial Staff or Distinguished Panel. It's been conceived, researched, and written ab ovo usque ad mala by Mr. Bryan A. Garner.