give (one) the cold shoulder

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give (one) the cold shoulder

To intentionally appear disinterested toward one; to snub. This phrase usually refers to the act of ignoring someone. It originated with the 19th-century practice of serving of a cold shoulder of meat to tiresome guests. She thinks you started that rumor about her—that's why she's been giving you the cold shoulder all day.
See also: cold, give, shoulder
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

give someone the cold shoulder

COMMON If someone gives you the cold shoulder, they deliberately stop being friendly to you and ignore you. Something's happened and I don't know what it is, but he's giving me the cold shoulder. He was upset to find his previously friendly colleagues giving him the cold shoulder. Note: You can also say that you get the cold shoulder from someone. Nancy found she was getting the cold shoulder from a lot of people she'd thought were her friends. Note: You can say that someone or something is cold-shouldered when people ignore or refuse to be interested in them. You can also talk about cold-shouldering. Since the President's election four years ago, he's been consistently cold-shouldered by the international community. The biggest stars stayed away from the festival in solidarity with their government's cold-shouldering of the country. Note: A shoulder is a cut of meat which includes the upper part of the animal's front leg. This expression refers to a medieval practice where important guests were given roast meat. Less important people were only given cold meat left over from previous meals.
See also: cold, give, shoulder, someone
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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References in periodicals archive ?
Her book covers nearly every embarrassing, difficult and emotional situation, offering accessible and implement able advice on how to deal with difficult people and conversations, how to negotiate a big deal, how to deal with a person giving you the cold shoulder, how to handle criticism and how to deliver criticism in a constructive manner.
If she keeps giving you the cold shoulder try to talk to her and acknowledge her confusion.
After all, no-one is giving you the cold shoulder because of your alleged tight-fistedness.
If she is still giving you the cold shoulder there may be a deeper issue you need to discuss.
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