old wine in a new bottle

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From the parable of Jesus of New Wine into Old Wineskins, Matthew 9:14–17, Mark 2:21–22, and Luke 5:33–39:

Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.
Matthew 9:17, King James Version
And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new bottles.
Mark 2:22, King James Version
And no man putteth new wine into old bottles; else the new wine will burst the bottles, and be spilled, and the bottles shall perish.
Luke 5:37, King James Version

Noun[edit]

old wine in a new bottle (uncountable)

  1. An existing concept or institution offered as though it were a new one.
    • 2003, Stephen M Colarelli, No Best Way
      Finally, some critics argue that evolutionary psychology is old wine in a new bottle — the old instinct theory in a new package.

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