bug·bear /-ˌbær, ˌbɛr/
Bug·a·boo Bug·bear n. Something frightful, as a specter; anything imaginary that causes needless fright; something used to excite needless fear; also, something really dangerous, or an imaginary monster, used to frighten children, etc. “Bugaboos to fright ye.”
But, to the world no bugbear is so great
As want of figure and a small estate. --Pope.
The bugaboo of the liberals is the church pray. --S. B. Griffin.
The great bugaboo of the birds is the owl. --J. Burroughs.
Syn: -- Hobgoblin; goblin; specter; ogre; scarecrow; bogeyman; boogeyman; booger.
Bug·bear n. Same as Bugaboo. -- a. Causing needless fright.
Bug·bear, v. t. To alarm with idle phantoms.
n 1: an imaginary monster used to frighten children [syn: bogeyman,
bugaboo, boogeyman, booger]
2: an object of dread or apprehension; "Germany was always a
bugbear for France"; "A foolish consistency is the
hobgoblin of little minds"--Ralph Waldo Emerson [syn: hobgoblin]