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Bite your tongue

Posted by ESC on January 13, 2004

In Reply to: Bite your toung posted by Gary on January 13, 2004

: : : : HI, can you please help me find the meaning and orlgin of this phrase.

: : : Bite your tongue. It means keep quiet. Don't say anything.

: : Can you tell us how this phrase originated?

: It sounds very 'Bible or Shakespeare'. Can't find it in the Bible. It does come up in Shakespeare in King Henry IV:

: So York must sit and fret and bite his tongue,
: While his own lands are bargain'd for and sold.

: Shakespeare was very fond of the word tongue; it appears hundreds of times in his plays. Incidentally, he never used the word Bible.

And the Bible never mentions Shakespeare.