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  1. #11
    Olenek's Avatar
    Olenek is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Quote Originally Posted by freezeframe View Post
    Excellent reference!

  2. #12
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Quote Originally Posted by SanMar View Post
    I would agree. It is normally said to keep one from breaking down.
    As far as I know.


    Not a teacher.
    It is, though it isn't used that much nowadays IMO.

  3. #13
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Quote Originally Posted by SanMar View Post
    Stiff upper lip.
    This is a fairly known British idiom, although not really used in Canada.
    But maybe the Brits should confirm if I have used it correctly.

    Not a teacher.
    Very British. Children of Victorian parents were expected (and admonished) to keep a stiff upper lip when they were sent away to boarding school; keeping a stiff upper lip stopped them breaking down in floods of tears.

    Another very British one - which doesn't mean the same, although it's related in that it is emotionless - is keeping 'a straight bat' (a reference to a safe cricketing stroke).

    b

  4. #14
    konungursvia's Avatar
    konungursvia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Has anyone mentioned "to keep a straight face" or "Jimmy Carter is a great man?" Oh, only the former is relevant. Oh well.

  5. #15
    freezeframe is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    Has anyone mentioned "to keep a straight face" or "Jimmy Carter is a great man?" Oh, only the former is relevant. Oh well.
    FDR, who was a greater man, had a great poker face.

  6. #16
    dangauss is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    The expression often used in American newspapers and on the news is: stone-faced.

    i.e. The defendant sat stone-faced in the courtroom as the verdict was read.

    The expression: without batting an eye is also used sometimes. This means you do something and do not even blink your eyes to indicate any type of feeling. The criminal pointed his gun at the teller and, without batting an eye, she told him to go to hell.

  7. #17
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    That reminds me of a cliche often used in sports commentaries: 'Fergusson sat tight-lipped and ashen-faced as his team had rings run round them'. It's clear that he's not happy, but he doesn't react in a way that would give more specific information about what's making him unhappy.

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 13-May-2011 at 17:28. Reason: Added last sentence

  8. #18
    tks499 is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    thanks alot

  9. #19
    Olenek's Avatar
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Quote Originally Posted by dangauss View Post
    The expression often used in American newspapers and on the news is: stone-faced.
    Oh yes! I remember this expression -
    Oliver Barret IV called his father Old Stonyface (Old Stony) in "Love Story" by Erich Segal.

  10. #20
    BobK's Avatar
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    Default Re: idioms meaning "to avoid showing any emotion"

    Quote Originally Posted by freezeframe View Post
    I think stiff upper lip means not showing negative emotions. For example, if something is upsetting. I don't think it's used for not showing amusement. But I could be wrong. All my knowledge about the UK derives from Father Ted*.




    * Slight exaggeration.


    AC/DC - Stiff upper lip

    Not showing amusement is 'po-faced' or 'strait-laced' [students should note the spelling: it's a reference to tightly laced corsets, which both went with a puritanical world-view and incidentally made it painful to laugh. The word 'strait' is chiefly used now to refer to a narrow piece of sea; the French étroit is related, as are 'dire straits' - a metaphor that means 'a tight spot' [which itself is a metaphor!] that refers to such a sea-passage]

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 21-May-2011 at 12:36. Reason: added last paren

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