Embarrassment of riches
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British pronunciation/ɛmbˈaɹəsmənt ɒv ɹˈɪtʃɪz/
American pronunciation/ɛmbˈæɹəsmənt ʌv ɹˈɪtʃᵻz/
01

a situation in which there is too much of resources or options for one to choose from

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embarrassment of riches definition and meaning

What is the origin of the idiom "embarrassment of riches" and when to use it?

The phrase "embarrassment of riches" actually originated from William Shakespeare's play "Hamlet," written in the early 17th century. In Act III, Scene IV, Hamlet uses the phrase "embassage of goodly virtues" to describe an overwhelming abundance of positive qualities. Over time, the phrase evolved to "embarrassment of riches" in English literature, particularly during the 18th century. It has become a widely recognized idiom to describe situations where there is an excessive amount or overwhelming abundance of something valuable. It is commonly employed when discussing scenarios involving wealth, possessions, talents, opportunities, or options.

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Example
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The talented musician had an embarrassment of riches when it came to career opportunities, making it difficult to choose which path to pursue.
The popular author faced an embarrassment of riches with numerous book deals and publishing offers flooding in after the success of their debut novel.
The entrepreneur found themselves in an embarrassment of riches with multiple investors willing to fund their startup, making it challenging to decide which offer to accept.
The restaurant's menu offered an embarrassment of riches, leaving diners overwhelmed by the wide variety of delicious options to choose from.
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Meaning of "Embarrassment of riches"
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