put a damper on


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put a damper on something

Fig. to have a dulling or numbing influence on something. The bad news really put a damper on everything. The rainy weather put a damper on our picnic.
See also: damper, on, put

put a damper on something

to make something less enjoyable The terrible weather put a damper on this year's New Year celebrations.
Etymology: a damper is a device that reduces the loudness of sound, esp. on a piano, or controls the temperature of a fire
See also: damper, on, put

put a damper/dampener on something

to stop an occasion from being enjoyable
Usage notes: A damper is a device used on piano strings to make the sound less loud.
Steve lost his wallet so that rather put a damper on the evening. We were both ill while we were in Boston, which put a bit of a dampener on things.
See also: damper, on, put

put a damper on

Discourage, dishearten, deter, as in Grandpa's death put a damper on our Christmas holidays. This idiom employs the noun damper in the sense of "something that damps or depresses the spirits," a usage dating from the mid-1700s.
See also: damper, on, put
References in periodicals archive ?
The National Weather Service put the chances of rain at 60 percent as the San Fernando Valley slogged through a wet weekend that put a damper on a number of weekend sports events.