bite (one's) tongue

(redirected from bite our tongue)

bite (one's) tongue

1. Literally, to accidentally pinch one's tongue with one's teeth. My daughter started crying after she bit her tongue.
2. To stop oneself from saying something (often something potentially inappropriate, hurtful, or offensive). I had to bite my tongue as my sister gushed about her new boyfriend yet again.
See also: bite, tongue

bite one's tongue

 
1. Lit. to bite down on one's tongue by accident. Ouch! I bit my tongue!
2. Fig. to struggle not to say something that you really want to say. I had to bite my tongue to keep from telling her what I really thought. I sat through that whole silly conversation biting my tongue.
See also: bite, tongue

bite one's tongue

Refrain from speaking out, as in A new grandmother must learn to bite her tongue so as not to give unwanted advice, or I'm sure it'll rain during graduation.-Bite your tongue! This term alludes to holding the tongue between the teeth in an effort not to say something one might regret. Shakespeare used it in 2 Henry VI (1:1): "So York must sit and fret and bite his tongue." Today it is sometimes used as a humorous imperative, as in the second example, with the implication that speaking might bring bad luck. [Late 1500s] Also see hold one's tongue.
See also: bite, tongue

bite your tongue

COMMON If you bite your tongue, you do not say something that you would like to say. All I can do is to bite my tongue if I want to keep my job.
See also: bite, tongue

bite your tongue

make a desperate effort to avoid saying something.
See also: bite, tongue

bite your ˈtongue

stop yourself from saying something that might upset somebody or cause an argument, although you want to speak: I didn’t believe her explanation but I bit my tongue. OPPOSITE: give somebody a piece of your mind
See also: bite, tongue
References in periodicals archive ?
The study also found we can expect two shaving cuts and three stubbed toes each year - but any complaining may be muted as we also bite our tongue three times and lose our voice at least once.
Megson said: "A lot of the players are very angry with the way the game was officiated and we've certainly had to bite our tongue, but it's hard to take.
We're lacking in certain areas, but we'll just have to bite our tongues until the end.