hold (one's) tongue

(redirected from hold his tongue)

hold (one's) tongue

To stay quiet despite wanting to say something If you want to say something rude to my girlfriend, please hold your tongue, all right?
See also: hold, tongue

hold one's tongue

Fig. to refrain from speaking; to refrain from saying something unpleasant. I felt like scolding her, but I held my tongue. Hold your tongue, John. You can't talk to me that way!
See also: hold, tongue

hold one's tongue

Also, hold or keep one's peace . Keep quiet, remain silent, as in If you don't hold your tongue you'll have to go outside, or Jenny kept her peace about the wedding. The idiom with tongue uses hold in the sense of "restrain," while the others use hold and keep in the sense of "preserve." Chaucer used the first idiom in The Tale of Melibus (c. 1387): "Thee is better hold thy tongue still, than for to speak." The variant appears in the traditional wedding service, telling anyone who knows that a marriage should not take place to "speak now or forever hold your peace." [First half of 1300s] Also see keep quiet.
See also: hold, tongue

hold your tongue

If you hold your tongue, you do not speak. Douglas held his tongue, preferring not to speak out on a politically sensitive issue. Note: People sometimes say hold your tongue as an angry way of telling someone to be quiet. `Hold your tongue, woman,' he had warned her furiously.
See also: hold, tongue

hold your tongue

remain silent. informal
See also: hold, tongue
References in classic literature ?
The old councillor, who had had three orders given him to make him hold his tongue, asserted that the Leap-frog was a prophet; for that one could see on his back, if there would be a severe or mild winter, and that was what one could not see even on the back of the man who writes the almanac.
I told you already to go gently, master commissary," said Pasamonte; "their lordships yonder never gave you that staff to ill-treat us wretches here, but to conduct and take us where his majesty orders you; if not, by the life of-never mind-; it may be that some day the stains made in the inn will come out in the scouring; let everyone hold his tongue and behave well and speak better; and now let us march on, for we have had quite enough of this entertainment.
NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley is not one to hold his tongue regarding issues in today's NBA and he recently chimed in on Kyrie Irving's supposed request to be traded from the Cleveland Cavaliers.
He might be advised to hold his tongue in terms of the people he is not willing to work with as he is likely to have to rethink his position after the election.
And Robinson couldn't hold his tongue after the game.
Moores has kept admirably quiet about the nuts and bolts of his ousting, even though the news was circulating widely in the press before he was officially informed, but is unable to hold his tongue when faced with his image as a coach who was dependent on statistics.
Moores has kept admirably quiet about the nuts and bolts of his ousting, even though the news was circulating widely in the press before he was offi-cially informed, but is unable to hold his tongue when faced with his image as a coach who was dependent on statistics.
JOSE MOURINHO has been trying to hold his tongue all season, perhaps self-aware enough to realise that his own arrogant streak might just be Chelsea's Achilles heel.
Wright was furious at his side's defensive display but admitted it was better to hold his tongue in the aftermath of a disastrous defeat than say something he may regret.
CHRISTIAN can't hold his tongue any longer when Steven announces he and Stacey are moving in together.
Never one to hold his tongue, Nas gives his views on tracks such as Black Republican and You Can't Kill Me.
Never one to hold his tongue, Douglas' own actions in the '50s, demanding recognition for blacklisted ``Spartacus'' screenwriter Dalton Trumbo began the end of such policies that had destroyed many careers in Hollywood for almost a decade.
Not known to hold his tongue, Lee lets it all hang out here, and Aftab has done a marvelous job of rounding up witnesses to refute and support the impressions of the outspoken director.
Iconoclastic rapper Sage Francis is angry--at himself, at hip-hop, at the world--and isn't about to hold his tongue.
But Schaitberger isn't usually one to hold his tongue.