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Idioms

lost for words

This page is about the idiom lost for words

Meaning

You are lost for words if you're so surprised by something that you can't think of anything to say.

For example

  • After hearing the news, Kerry was lost for words.

  • I've never seen our boss lost for words before, but when John called him a fool, he just stood there staring at him. I don't think anyone has ever said that to him before.

Note:
The wonderful word "flabbergasted", meaning a mixture of surprise and confusion, can indicate a feeling similar to the one that "lost for words" suggests. "Dumbstruck" (i.e. to be struck dumb, or speechless, by something) is another interesting word with a similar meaning.

Quick Quiz

Aisha was lost for words when she

a. heard she'd won the lottery

b. forgot her lines for the play

c. couldn't find her speech

Idiom of the Day

Contributor: Matt Errey