to rain on your parade

Click below to listen to the phrase.


Choose the correct definition a, b or c.

a) to encourage creativity

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b) to spoil plans

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To rain on your parade’ means to spoil someone’s plans. It is to disappoint or discourage something by ruining or criticizing their plans or aspirations.

French translation

mettre des bâtons dans les roues de quelqu’un

How NOT to translate : *pleuvoir sur la parade de quelqu’un


Examples in context

’Lampard : We won’t let anyone rain on our parade, we all believe we’re going to finals.

Frank Lampard can recall the night the last Englishman to manage England in a must-win game at Wembley found himself soaked, savaged and sacked.

When England face Poland on Tuesday, Lampard and Steven Gerrard will be the only players in the squad from the rain-lashed evening six years ago when Steve McClaren sheltered under a brolly but could not hide from the consequences of a 3-2 defeat by Croatia that cost them a place in the 2008 European Championship finals.’

The Daily Mail, 12th October 2013


’Letter : Let’s do better in recognizing student achievement.

Have you ever been to a Board of Education meeting ? BOE meetings have four components (currently in this order) : public comments, awards, public agenda and private agenda. I think this should be changed.

People who want to make the school system better, stronger and more efficient must wrestle with raining on a child’s parade to bring up important issues. Moving public comments to follow the recognition of these children’s successes and hard work will allow them to wallow in the joy that is rightfully theirs.’

The Norwich Bulletin, 18th January 2015


Everyday usage

I’m sorry to rain on your parade but you are not allowed to have alcohol on the premises.

I hate to rain on your parade, but lots of people have tried that strategy and it hasn’t worked yet.

c) to prevent someone from working

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