Down to Earth

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Meaning of Idiom 'Down to Earth'

1. (To be brought or to come) down to Earth means to be brought back to reality; to become realistic or alert to the actual events going on around one. 1,2

2. (To be) down to Earth means to be realistic, practical, and straightforward; to not be pretentious or shallow. 2,3

Examples of Use

Mr. Harold was so down to Earth during the interview, it made Sarah's butterflies subside."

"You need to come down to Earth and look for a real job, said Mike's mom. You can't expect to make a living as a starving artist."

Origin

This idiom may allude to angels or other celestial creatures coming down to Earth or being 'cast down' to join mortal humans. It also may derive from the notion of the word of God being 'brought down to Earth' so that humans could understand it.

Sources
1. Spears, Richard A. McGraw-Hill's American Idioms Dictionary. Boston: McGraw Hill, 2008.
2. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
3. Jarvie, Gordon. Bloomsbury Dictionary of Idioms. London: Bloomsbury, 2009.

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