give (one) pause

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give (one) pause

To cause one to take a moment to consider something; to cause one to hesitate. I'd love to buy a house, but the fact that I'd have to completely deplete my savings account to do it gives me pause. That statistic should give everyone pause.
See also: give, pause
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

give someone pause (for thought)

Fig. to cause someone to stop and think. When I see a golden sunrise, it gives me pause for thought. Witnessing an accident is likely to give all of us pause.
See also: give, pause
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

give pause

Cause one to hesitate, as in The high monthly installment payments gave me pause, or, as Shakespeare put it in Hamlet (3:1): "For in that sleep of death what dreams may come ... Must give us pause." [c. 1600]
See also: give, pause
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
A poem by a very "hot" woman will give you pause. And please don't tell Roy Mash's wife his secret.
Reading some of the stories would certainly give you pause for thought and should act as an inspiration.
The fried tomatoes and the bacon might give you pause. But turkey breast, 9-grain bread, and basil sure sound like less of a splurge than, say, Applebee's Reuben sandwich or its Roast Beef, Bacon & Mushroom Melt.
The framers of the US Constitution were writing for about three million people, and the current interpreters of that Constitution are now doing so for about 300 million; if that does not give you pause, consider the "dumbing down" of American, the stunningly unequal distribution of wealth, and the ability of targeted marketing to tell voters what they want to hear regardless of the intentions of the candidate.
But it does give you pause when you consider that the obesity obsessives also blame capitalism, for precipitating the current crisis by making food plentiful, inexpensive, appealing, and convenient.
It is good fun, however, throughout and there are are one or two moments which give you pause for thought.