button your lip

button your lip

remain silent – informal

Related Idioms and Phrases :

look as if butter would not melt in your mouth

appear deceptively gentle or innocent – informal

have butter-fingers = be a butter-fingers

be unable to catch deftly or hold securely

This phrase comes from the idea that hands covered with butter will be slippery, making holding on to anything difficult. There was also a dialect sense of unable to handle anything hot as if your fingers were made of melting butter.

Butterfingers! is often jeeringly shouted at someone who has failed to catch a ball in a game.

the butterfly effect

the phenomenon whereby a minute localized change in a complex system can have large effects elsewhere

The expression comes from chaos theory. In 1979, Edward N. Lorenz gave a paper to the American Association for the Advancement of Science entitled … Does the flap of a butterfly's wings in Brazil set off a tornado in Texas?

have butterflies in your stomach

have a queasy feeling because you are nervous – Informal

on the button


exactly right - informal chiefly US

press the button

initiate an action or train of events - informal

During the cold war period, this expression was often used with reference to the possible action of the US or Soviet presidents in starting a nuclear war.

push his buttons = press his buttons

be successful in arousing or provoking a reaction in someone - informal

buy the farm

die - North American informal

This expression originated as US military slang, probably with the meaning that the pilot (or owner) of a crashed plane owes money to the farmer whose property or land is damaged in the crash.

buy time

adopt tactics which delay an event temporarily so as to have longer to improve your own position

by and large

on the whole

everything considered

Originally this phrase was used in a nautical context, describing the handling of a ship both to the wind and off it.

by the by = by the bye



let bygones be bygones

forgive and forget past offences or causes of conflict.

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