beat around the bush | beat about the bush

This page is about the idiom beat around the bush | beat about the bush.

Meaning: If you beat around the bush, or beat about the bush, you don't say something directly, usually because you don't want to upset the person you're talking to.

For example:

  • I had trouble telling Pedro he'd lost his job. I started beating around the bush and talking about one door closing and another door opening.

  • Stop beating about the bush. Just tell me what's happened!

Quick Quiz:

It's hard not to beat around the bush when you have to

a. put out a bushfire

b. give someone some good news

c. tell someone some bad news

Idiom of the Day

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Contributor: Matt Errey