jill of all trades

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Alternative forms[edit]


By analogy with jack of all trades.


jill of all trades ‎(plural jills of all trades)

  1. (idiomatic) A woman competent in many endeavors, especially one who excels in none of them.
    • 1988, Janette Turner Hospital, Charades, University of Queensland Press (2003), ISBN 0702233889, page 268:
      Sitting in a dive in Central Square, the one where she works as a dishwasher, barmaid, jill of all trades (illegal, no papers, below-the-minimum cash payments, afternoon and early evening shifts), she stared into a mug of beer and told herself: There comes a point.
    • 2000, Amy Einsohn, The Copyeditor's Handbook: A Guide for Book Publishing and Corporate Communications, University of California Press (2000), ISBN 0520218345, page 64:
      If you intend to work primarily in one field, that approach would be reasonable. But if you aspire to be a jack or jill of all trades, you may want to begin by looking at some general guides for nonspecialized writers.
    • 2012, Ruth Hamilton, The Bells of Scotland Road, Macmillan (2012), ISBN 9781447209461, unnumbered page:
      Sister Josephine was a jill of all trades. She served as bursar, school secretary, meals supervisor, welfare officer and troubleshooter.

Coordinate terms[edit]