What does the idiom "Give someone the cold shoulder" mean?
Although the meanings of the words in them do not make any sense when examined one by one, the word groups that are shaped according to the cultural roots of the language and that make sense as a whole are called idioms. Give someone the cold shoulder meaning, in what situations is it used?
Meaning of "Give someone the cold shoulder"
To give someone the cold shoulder is an idiom which is used to describe a situation where someone is deliberately not showing someone else any attention or in some cases actively ignoring them. It is generally used to express the idea of someone not being accepted by a group or community for some reason.
The term started to be used in the Middle Ages, where literal cold shoulders of meat were a common dish. During this time, if someone were to refuse this offering or ignore it, it symbolised a disregard for the other person. So, it has been suggested that the phrase has been used to describe a situation where someone is deliberately given the cold shoulder as a sign of hostility or disrespect.
The phrase is generally used to describe a situation where someone is being deliberately ignored or not accepted due to some reason. It is also used to express feelings of resentment or anger between two parties and in some cases to show disapproval of someone’s behaviour or actions. It is also used to express a sense of disappointment or hurt when someone is not given the attention they expected or deserved.
- When she arrived at the party, she was given the cold shoulder by her former friends.
- She was given the cold shoulder after she made fun of her classmate.
- He was given the cold shoulder after he was caught lying to his parents.
The universal role of idioms
"Kill two birds with one stone" is an English idiom that means to accomplish two things with a single action. In French, the similar idiom is "Faire d'une pierre deux coups," which translates to "To kill two birds with one stone." This idiom highlights the efficiency of completing two tasks with one action.