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not utter a word

To be completely silent; to remain discreet (about something); to not tell anyone (about something). All the while our father was shouting at us, my sister and I didn't utter a word. Tom, don't you dare utter a word about this! I would die of embarrassment if anyone were to find out.
See also: not, utter, word

not open one's mouth

 and not utter a word
Fig. not to say anything at all; not to tell something (to anyone). Don't worry, I'll keep your secret. I won't even open my mouth. Have no fear. I won't utter a word.
See also: mouth, not, open

not open one's mouth

Also, shut one's mouth; not say or utter a word . Be silent, repress one's feelings or opinions, keep a secret. For example, Don't worry, I'm not going to open my mouth on this issue, or She promised not to say a word about it to anyone. Also see hold one's tongue; keep one's mouth shut.
See also: mouth, not, open

utter a word

See also: utter, word
References in classic literature ?
Has hell broke loose, that man should utter sounds like these
Hast thou dared to utter such words in my presence and in that of these illustrious ladies?
Monsieur d'Albon shuddered as he saw the utter abandonment of the body, the careless animal ease which revealed in the hapless woman a total absence of soul.
Food was brought me at intervals but owing to the utter darkness of the place I do not know whether I lay there days, or weeks, or months.
Then, in spite of the wind and rain, he fell into the deep, sweet sleep of utter exhaustion.
They cannot utter the one; nor they will not utter the other.
Listen," he resumed, when he was no longer afraid that the tear would escape; "our towers here are very high, a man who should fall from them would be dead before touching the pavement; when it shall please you to have me fall, you will not have to utter even a word, a glance will suffice.
The vindictive fire was still burning in him, and he could utter no word of retractation; but it was nevertheless in his mind that having come back to this hearth where he had enjoyed a caressing friendship he had found.
To the utter exclusion, I suppose," he remarked, "of me?
The rustic driver, stupefied and aghast, stood looking at the wagon, and did nothing but utter loud cries to Hercules to come and help him.
Thence they arise and go abroad by night, veiled in thick mist, and utter their song with lovely voice, praising Zeus the aegis- holder and queenly Hera of Argos who walks on golden sandals and the daughter of Zeus the aegis-holder bright-eyed Athene, and Phoebus Apollo, and Artemis who delights in arrows, and Poseidon the earth-holder who shakes the earth, and reverend Themis and quick-glancing (1) Aphrodite, and Hebe with the crown of gold, and fair Dione, Leto, Iapetus, and Cronos the crafty counsellor, Eos and great Helius and bright Selene, Earth too, and great Oceanus, and dark Night, and the holy race of all the other deathless ones that are for ever.
The utter hopelessness that was reflected in his face must have been the counterpart of what I myself felt, but in that brief instant I determined to hide my own misgivings that I might bolster up the courage of the others.
I afterwards found that these labours, performed by an invisible hand, greatly astonished them; and once or twice I heard them, on these occasions, utter the words `good spirit,' `wonderful'; but I did not then understand the signification of these terms.
This was quite as much as the youths were accustomed to utter, even on more important occasions, but having given a pledge of their intentions, they were far from being backward in redeeming it.
said Rose, when Oliver had been one day feebly endeavouring to utter the words of thankfulness that rose to his pale lips; 'you shall have many opportunities of serving us, if you will.