- Idiom – A little bird told me or A little birdie told me
- Meaning – This expression is used when you have some information, but you don’t want to say where the information came from. You might use this idiom when you don’t want to say who told you a secret – but you do want to discuss it. You can say A little bird told me when you want to discuss a secret without revealing your source.
- This idiom is often used in a humorous way; when it is obvious that both parties in the conversation know who shared the information.
- “A little bird told me that you got engaged. Congratulations!”
Idioms related to telling or keeping secrets:
- Dish the dirt – to tell people gossip or unpleasant information about someone. “Come on! Dish the dirt! What did he say?”
- Heard through the grapevine – to hear news or gossip from someone who heard the news or gossip from someone else. “I heard through the grapevine that you’ve sold your house.”
- Keep it under your hat – keep something a secret. “I’ll tell you a secret about Tim but you’ve got to keep it under your hat!”
- Let the cat out of the bag – to reveal a secret by accident. “Now that you’ve let the cat out of the bag you have to tell us the whole story!”
- My lips are sealed – this expression is said when you promise to keep a secret. “Don’t worry, my lips are sealed. I won’t tell anyone!”
- Mum’s the word – this British English expression means to keep quiet about something or keep a secret. “Please don’t tell anyone I’m eating for two. Mum’s the word!”
- Spill the beans – to tell a secret. “You know what happened to Mike. Hurry up and spill the beans!”
- Is there an idiom like this in your country?
What is an idiom?
An idiom is a word or phrase that is not taken literally. An idiom is an expression that cannot be understood from the meanings of its individual words, but has a separate meaning of its own.