walk on eggs

walk on eggs

To act or proceed with great care, caution, and consideration so as not to upset someone or trigger some imminent disaster. The littlest thing tends to anger my mother, so I feel like I have to walk on eggs whenever I'm at her house. You're walking on eggs criticizing that political party so openly like that—they have the power and influence to do some serious damage to your career.
See also: egg, on, walk

walking on eggs

Acting or proceeding with great care, caution, and consideration so as not to upset someone or trigger some imminent disaster. I suggest walking on eggs if you plan to go after those lobbyists—they have the power and influence to do some serious damage to your career. The littlest thing tends to anger my mother, so I feel like I am walking on eggs whenever I'm at her house.
See also: egg, on, walking

walk on eggs

 and walk on thin ice
Fig. to proceed very cautiously; to be in a very precarious position. (Fig. on the image of someone walking on something that offers little support and may collapse at any moment.) I have to remember that I'm walking on eggs when I give this speech. Careful with radical ideas like that. You're walking on thin ice.
See also: egg, on, walk

walk on eggs

Proceed very cautiously, as in I knew I was walking on eggs when I asked about the department's involvement in the lawsuit . This metaphoric idiom transfers walking on fragile eggs to discussing or investigating a dangerous subject. [First half of 1700s]
See also: egg, on, walk

walk on eggs (or eggshells)

be extremely cautious about your words or actions.
See also: egg, on, walk

walk on eggs

and walk on thin ice
in. to walk very cautiously; to be in a very precarious position. I have to remember that I’m walking on eggs when I give this speech. You’re walking on thin ice when you criticize a member of that group.
See also: egg, on, walk

walk on eggs, to

To proceed very carefully. One could not, of course, literally tread on eggs without breaking them, so the image of extreme caution is actually hyperbole. The expression dates from the late sixteenth century. Robert Burton used it in The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621): “Going as if he trod upon eggs.”
See also: on, walk

walking on eggs

Being especially careful. Even more than tiptoeing, the image of walking so gingerly that you wouldn't crack eggs is especially apt, for example, in broaching a sensitive subject, as in “When I brought up the subject of her ex-marriage, I felt as though I was walking on eggs.”
See also: egg, on, walking