give away

(redirected from give themselves away)

give (oneself) away

To reveal or make known—usually unintentionally—something about oneself, such as one's actions, intentions, ideas, guilt, etc. Margaret had been embezzling money from the corporate account for years, but she finally gave herself away when she claimed her two-month trip to Paris as a business expense. I wanted my acceptance to Harvard to be a surprise, but I gave myself away when I mentioned about moving in the autumn.
See also: away, give

give someone or something away

to reveal a secret about someone or something. I thought no one knew where I was, but my loud breathing gave me away. We know that Billy ate the cherry pie. The cherry juice on his shirt gave him away. I had planned a surprise, but John gave away my secret.
See also: away, give

give someone away

 (to someone)
1. Fig. [for the bride's father] to give the bride away to the groom. (Customarily done just prior to the actual marriage ceremony.) Mr. Franklin gave Amy away to Terry just as he had done in the rehearsal. He was reluctant to give his daughter away.
2. Fig. to reveal something secret about someone to someone else. Please don't give me away. I don't want anyone to know my plans. Alice did everything she could to keep from giving herself away.
See also: away, give

give something away

 (to someone)
1. to donate to, or bestow something upon, someone. I gave the old clothing away to Tom. I gave away my coat to Tom.
2. to tell a secret to someone. Please don't give the surprise away to anyone. Don't give away my secret.
3. to reveal the answer to a question, riddle, or problem to someone. Don't give the answer away to them! Don't give away the answer!
See also: away, give

give away

1. Make a gift of, bestow, as in I decided to give away all my plants. [c. 1400]
2. Present a bride to the groom in a marriage ceremony, as in Her father gave Karen away. [c. 1700]
3. Reveal or make something known, often unintentionally; also, betray or expose someone. For example, She gave away her true feelings, or He gave away his accomplices. This idiom is sometimes put as give oneself away, as in If you don't want the family to know about your gambling, don't give yourself away by spending your winnings . [Late 1800s]
See also: away, give

give away

1. To relinquish something; give something to another: The store is giving away free samples of cheese. I gave my old clothes away to charity.
2. To present a bride to her bridegroom at a wedding ceremony: Very often, the father gives away the bride. I gave my daughter away at her wedding.
3. To reveal something or make something known, often accidentally; divulge something: The preview gave away the film's surprise ending. The tone of the teacher's voice gave the answer away.
4. To betray someone: I tried to pass for a local resident, but my accent gave me away.
See also: away, give
References in periodicals archive ?
Some give themselves away with mobile phone selfies showing them holding AK-47s.
And leftists give themselves away with the regularity of a progressive politician giving away tax dollars, as they live lives of rationalization and justification.
They are on missions across the street and around the world, and they challenge all to give themselves away both locally and globally.
Unlike other species, they don't give themselves away by flying towards light," he said.
until they give themselves away with their shining "propellers.
Be patient because they'll sometimes stay put for a long time, but sooner or later they will stir and give themselves away.
The first frosts of the season could spark off frenzied fry feeding at Hury and as the water cools the trout may become harder to find, but the fry feeders often give themselves away as shoals of roach fry explode from the water in a desperate attempt to escape the marauding trout.
In the narrative of the immigrants, we see how they take up the difficult decision to migrate, bless God in the midst adversity, break themselves open so they can feed those they love, and give themselves away for the nourishment of others, even at the cost of their lives" (112).
When people characterise the leading protagonists of Flat racing as insentient, they merely give themselves away as lacking a proper understanding of some of the characters involved.
These people can sometimes give themselves away because they seem uncomfortable or nerv in the clothes they are wearing.
Liberals always give themselves away so easily when they circumvent the main issue, which they do so well.
Most underage teenyboppers are too nervous to look him in the eye and immediately give themselves away.
Security company G4S Security Services commissioned a report from a Staffordshire academic which says shoplifters often give themselves away by behaviour known as "shark's eyes" and "shielding".