with a grain of salt


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Related to with a grain of salt: the tip of the iceberg

with a grain of salt

With reservations or the understanding that some rumor or piece of information may not be completely true or accurate. Possibly a reference to an ancient Roman antidote to poison that included or consisted of a grain of salt. Kevin said that you can get into the club for free if you wear red, but I always take what he says with a grain of salt. Read whatever that paper publishes with a grain of salt—it's really just a trashy tabloid.
See also: grain, of, salt
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

with a grain of salt

Also, with a pinch of salt. Skeptically, with reservations. For example, I always take Sandy's stories about illnesses with a grain of salt-she tends to exaggerate. This expression is a translation of the Latin cum grano salis, which Pliny used in describing Pompey's discovery of an antidote for poison (to be taken with a grain of salt). It was soon adopted by English writers.
See also: grain, of, salt
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.

with a grain of salt

With reservations; skeptically: Take that advice with a grain of salt.
See also: grain, of, salt
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

with a grain/pinch of salt, (to take)

Not to be believed entirely; to be viewed with skepticism. This term comes from the Latin cum grano salis, which appeared in Pliny’s account of Pompey’s discovery of an antidote against poison that was to be taken with a grain of salt added (Naturalis Historia, ca. a.d. 77). The term was quickly adopted by English writers, among them John Trapp, whose Commentary on Revelations (1647) stated, “This is to be taken with a grain of salt.”
See also: grain, of, pinch
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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