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mince (one's) words

to soften the effect of one's words. Tell me what you think, and don't mince your words. A frank person never minces words.
See also: mince, word

not mince words

to say what you mean as clearly and simply as possible Tom didn't mince any words - he told us right at the beginning of the meeting that he was quitting his job.
Usage notes: sometimes used in the form mince words (to say something that is not clear): The report minces words, trying not to offend anyone.
See also: mince, not, word

not mince (your) words

to say what you mean clearly and directly, even if you upset people by doing this The report does not mince words about the incompetence of some government officials. Never a woman to mince her words, she described the former minister as self-centred and arrogant.
See also: mince, word

mince matters

Also, mince words. Moderate or restrain one's language to be polite or avoid giving offense. Today these phrases are nearly always put negatively, as in Not to mince matters, I feel he should resign, or Don't mince words-say what you mean. The usage dates from the mid-1500s and transfers cutting something such as meat into small pieces to minimizing the harsh impact of words.
See also: matter, mince
References in periodicals archive ?
TO make the most of your cash, why not turn your leftover meat into delicious mince.
The bank dedicated $100,000 to a trust fund set up for her children, Andrew and Stephanie Mince, and private residents donated an additional $47,000.
4 by Jeff Mince, Leech's ex-husband and the father of her two children, claims the bank improperly withheld the $47,000 of public donations in its own trust fund and made Leech's mother, Elaine Cavaletto, the trustee.
A spokesman for Western Financial Bank declined to comment on the suit, as did Cavaletto and Jeff Mince.
Mince, who has had custody of the children since his ex-wife's death, had sought money from the fund to pay for what he said were the immediate expenses of settling the two children in his home.
Shea said Mince also had requested money to pay for braces for Stephanie, for therapy for the children, for new furniture for the household, for bicycles and for a family vacation.
Mince felt it would be good for the family to get away from it all for a little while, together,'' Shea said.