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Tongue in cheek

Posted by R. Berg on November 25, 2001

In Reply to: Phrase posted by bonnie on November 25, 2001

: What is the meaning of the phrase "keep tongue in cheek"?

To say something tongue-in-cheek means to say it in a deadpan joking way: you don't intend your words to be taken at face value. Sometimes confused, in print, with "keeping one's tongue in check"--refraining (with some effort) from speaking out.