Posted by: Dutch | November 9, 2009

Barking up the wrong tree

Meaning

Following a dead end path, pursuing an incorrect lead or assumption.

Example

If you think those gloves will convict OJ, you are barking up the wrong tree.

Probable Origin

When using dogs in a foxhunt, the dogs sometimes corner the fox in a tree. The dogs will proceed to bark up at the fox. Barking up the wrong tree, where there is no fox, is a pointless exercise.

-Our thanks to Chuck Moreland of Origin of Phrases

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