Is there an idiom about exploration? I am trying to think of one, but I could only come up with a weird one that doesn't have an entry in the dictionary.

For example:

They sent giant spaceships into space to push the boundaries of mankind.

I am not sure why, but it sounds weird. Also, I am not sure if I am using it correctly.

  • What's the supposed meaning of the idiom you're looking for?
    – user3395
    Jun 7, 2019 at 23:01
  • Anything related to exploration and that's about the idea of discovering new things and locations.
    – Sayaman
    Jun 7, 2019 at 23:02
  • do you mean any kind of exploration? all of "space exploration", "ocean exploration" and some other exploration is in your area of interest?
    – user95456
    Jun 7, 2019 at 23:53

2 Answers 2


You could try this:

They sent giant spaceships into space to discover brave new worlds.

From Merriam-Webster's definition of brave new worlds:

: a future world, situation, or development
also : a recent development or recently changed situation
// The company was slow to enter the brave new world of computer technology.

The fact that space exploration can be about finding new planets (worlds), means that the expression has both a literal and figurative interpretation. It also gives a kind of heroic slant to the bravery of the explorers.

It comes from the 1932 Aldous Huxley novel Brave New World. (Which took it from Shakespeare's The Tempest.) But the phrase has made its way into mainstream culture since.

  • 1
    Actually, Huxley was quoting Shakespear. The phrase is from The Tempest and refers literally to America. Miranda says (in act V scn 1) "O brave new world That has such people in't!" to which her father the wizard Prospero replies, "Tis new to thee." Huxley's use was at least partly ironic, as the world he showed was far from idyllic Jun 8, 2019 at 0:25

Scientists and engineers sometimes attribute this saying to Albert Einstein:

If we knew what we were doing, we wouldn't call it research.

It can be modified to:

If we knew where we were going, we wouldn't call it exploration.

A similar idea:

I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

Robert Heinlein's fictional character D.D. Harriman was "The Man Who Sold the Moon". Part of his sales pitch was:

Don’t ask me what we’ll make a profit on; I can’t itemize the assets — but I can lump them. The assets are a planet—a whole planet that’s never been touched.

Or consider John Kennedy's dare to put a man on the moon:

But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win. And the others, too.

(Kennedy was a native speaker of English. But his Boston accent is not an accent that most English learners try to emulate.)

Also consider the introduction to Star Trek:

Space: The Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission: To explore strange new worlds. To seek out new life and new civilizations. To boldly go where no man has gone before!

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