Mawson, C.O.S., ed. (18701938). Rogets International Thesaurus. 1922.
Class V. Words Releasing to the Voluntary Powers
Division (I) Individual Volition
Section III. Voluntary Action
2. Complex Voluntary Action
UNSKILLFULNESS or unskilfulness &c. adj.; want of skill [See Skill]; incompetence or incompetency; inability, infelicity, indexterity [rare], clumsiness, inaptitude &c. adj.; inexperience; disqualification, unproficiency; quackery.
FOLLY, stupidity [See Imbecility. Folly]; indiscretion (rashness) [See Rashness]; thoughtlessness (inattention) [See Inattention], (neglect) [See Neglect]; sabotage [F.].
MISMANAGEMENT, misconduct, mis- feasance; inexpedience, bad policy, impolicy; maladministration; misrule, misgovernment, misapplication, misdirection.
ABSENCE OF RULE, rule of thumb; bungling &c. v.; failure [See Failure]; screw loose; too many cooks.
BLUNDER (mistake) [See Error]; étourderie [F.], gaucherie [F.], act of folly, balourdise [F.], bungle, botch, botchery; bad job, sad work.
sprat sent out to catch a whale, butterfly broken on a wheel, tempest in a teacup, storm in a teacup, much ado about nothing, wild-goose chase.
BUNGLER [See Bungler]; fool [See Fool]; hen with its head cut off [colloq.].
BE UNSKILLFUL or unskilful, &c. adj.; not see an inch beyond ones nose; blunder, bungle, muff [esp., baseball], boggle, fumble, botch, mar, spoil, bitch [obs.], flounder, stumble, trip; hobble [See Slowness]; put ones foot in it [colloq.]; make a -mess, - hash, - sad work- of [all colloq.]; overshoot the mark.
play tricks with, play Puck; mismanage, misconduct, misdirect, misapply, missend.
ACT FOOLISHLY; stultify -, make a fool of -, commit- oneself; play the fool; put oneself out of court; lose ones -head, - senses, - cunning; begin at the wrong end; do things by halves (not complete) [See Noncompletion]; make two bites of a cherry; play at cross-purposes; strain at a gnat and swallow a camel (caprice) [See Caprice]; put the cart before the horse; lock the stable door when the horse is stolen (too late) [See Intempestivity].
not know what one is about, not know ones own interest, not know on which side ones bread is buttered; stand in ones own light, quarrel with ones bread and butter, throw a stone in ones own garden, kill the goose which lays the golden eggs, pay dear for ones whistle, cut ones own throat, burn ones fingers; knock -, run- ones head against a stone wall; bring the house about ones ears; have too many -eggs in one basket (imprudent) [See Rashness], - irons in the fire.
cut blocks with a razor; hold a farthing candle to the sun (useless) [See Inutility]; fight with -, grasp at- a shadow; catch at straws, lean on a broken reed, reckon without ones host, pursue a wild-goose chase; go on a fools errand, go on a sleeveless errand [obs.]; go further and fare worse; fail [See Failure].
MISTAKE [See Error]; take the shadow for the substance (credulity) [See Credulity]; bark up the wrong tree; be in the wrong box, aim at a pigeon and kill a crow; take -, get- -the wrong pig by the tail, - the wrong sow by the ear, - the dirty end of the stick [all colloq.]; put the saddle on the wrong horse, put a square thing into a round hole, put new wine into old bottles; lose ones way, miss ones way; fall into a trap, catch a Tartar.