top of page

Idiom: Are You Game

The origins of the phrase "Are you game" from the Georgian era

How surprised are you to discover this phrase originated in the Georgian era?


The use of the word “game” in idiomatic phrases dates far earlier than the Georgian era, but the actual phrase “Are you game” and any variation thereof to imply being up for something or daring to do something comes to us from the 1720s.

In the 18th century, it began as a direct reference to cock fighting, comparing the person to a game-cock. As if to say the person has the spirit of a game-cock, is full of pluck, ready for the fight, ready for action, unafraid and up to any task.

The first use was something along the lines of “Are you as spirited as a game-cock?” which was soon shortened to “Are you game?”


bottom of page