Idiom – Cat Got Your Tongue
Cat Got Your Tongue – Idiom of the Day
To ask somebody why they are silent.
Back in history, the English Navy used to flog those sailors who committed a mistake. This activity was generally executed with a whip known as Cat-o’-nine-tails. The reason behind this name was nine endings that the whip had. The pain caused by this whip was so severe that it compelled the victim to be quiet for a longer period of time. While the sailor sat in a corner, sulking on the beating, others used to tease him by using the phrase, “Did the cat get your tongue?” With time, the idiom was shortened to cat got your tongue? Apart from this, another potential source comes from ancient Egypt, where the tongues of blasphemers and liars were cut and fed to cats.
A Penny for Your Thoughts?
Lost Your Tongue?
Is something eating you?
Is something stopping you from talking?
Would you care to say something?
Go through the examples to understand the usage of the idiom:
1. Did the cat get your tongue? Why aren’t you speaking up?
2. I asked Amanda whether the cat got her tongue as she grew quieter during an argument.
3. The way you’re silent, I assumed the cat got your tongue.
4. Being an introvert, his silence compelled others to ask whether the cat got his tongue.
5. In the party, don’t behave like the cat got your tongue. Just give yourself a break and start interacting with others.
6. When I met him for the first time, he was silent like a cat got his tongue. Now, look at him, not even shutting up for a minute.