Heart in my throat

Posted by ESC on August 14, 2002

In Reply to: Expression meaning posted by Word Camel on August 14, 2002

: : can anyone please enlighten me as to the meaning of the expression "with my heart in my throat"?

: It means to be nervous or frightened. I think it refers to the way people can sometimes feel tightness in the throat when they are terrified for something.

: Incidently, I think it's different to having a lump in the throat which is usually associated with being moved almost to the point of tears, often in a positive way.

: Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable also lists:

: Heart in his Boots
: His heart fell into his hose or sank into his boots. In Latin, "Cor illi in genua decidit. " In French, "Avoir la peur au ventre. " The two last phrases are very expressive: Fear makes the knees shake, and it gives one a stomach-ache; but the English phrase, if it means anything, must mean that it induces the person to run away.

: Heart in his Mouth
: His heart was in his mouth. That choky feeling in the throat which arises from fear, conscious guilt, shyness, etc.

: "The young lover tried to look at his ease, ... but his heart was in his mouth," - Miss Thackeray; Mrs. Dymond, p. 156.

Heart in my throat -- A person can feel the pulse point in his throat when he is frightened, angry, etc.