put one's cards on the table

EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

VerbEdit

put one's cards on the table

  1. (idiomatic) To reveal one's true intentions, beliefs, feelings, or other previously concealed facts about one's situation; to speak frankly.
    • 1899, Henry James, The Awkward Age, ch. 4:
      "We needn't either of us," she continued, "be concerned for the other's reasons, though I'm perfectly ready, I assure you, to put my cards on the table."
    • 1915, John Buchan, The Thirty-Nine Steps, ch. 4:
      I thought the time had come for me to put my cards on the table. I saw by this man's eye that he was the kind you can trust.
    • 1921, William MacLeod Raine, Tangled Trails, ch. 10:
      "Let's put our cards on the table. We think you're the man the police are looking for—the one described in the papers."
    • 2003 May 27, Tony Karon, "Mideast: Can Bush Deliver?," Time:
      Although Sharon has never put all his cards on the table, he's given plenty of indicators that in his vision, a Palestinian state comprises the 40-50 percent of the West Bank currently under PA jurisdiction.

SynonymsEdit

Last modified on 18 June 2013, at 18:10