swallow (one's) words

(redirected from swallows his words)

swallow (one's) words

To retract or rescind something one has said. He'll be swallowing his words once I show him the sales figures for this quarter. I knew I had to swallow my words when she beat me in that game of chess.
See also: swallow, word

swallow one's words

Take back what one said, as in If they win I'll have to swallow my words. George Farquhar used this idiom in The Inconstant (1702): "I have swallowed my words already; I have eaten them up." For a synonym, see eat one's words.
See also: swallow, word
References in periodicals archive ?
MHP deputy: Erdoy-an swallows his words when faced with the truth
She throws him a sharp look, and he swallows his words. Sabira is no longer the trim young woman with the long blond hair.
"Robin Cook swallows his words and is fond of quaint expressions like `We're being invited to believe' which reminds me of Miss Jean Brodie.