Do They Mean The Same: ‘Watch Your Tongue’ And ‘Watch Your Mouth’?

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  1. ngureco profile image82
    ngurecoposted 11 years ago

    Do They Mean The Same: ‘Watch Your Tongue’ And ‘Watch Your Mouth’?

  2. TheJman profile image60
    TheJmanposted 11 years ago

    for me.. watch your mouth may be used when someone has possibly used profanity or maybe they speak before they think and say stupid things. While watch your tounge would be said when someone maybe has what is refered to as a sharp tounge and maybe they hurt people by what they say.

  3. pinkboxer profile image60
    pinkboxerposted 10 years ago

    As I remember it, ' watch your tongue ' referred to the manner and tone of words spoken. Usually, with a sharpness that wounds emotionally. ' Watch your mouth ' referred to the use of words as a weapon. There are no boundaries here. Profanity, insults, and emotional destruction. All intentional and negative.

  4. Doc Snow profile image93
    Doc Snowposted 10 years ago

    I'd say "Watch your tongue" could be a caution against saying anything better left unsaid:  a hurtful tactless remark, a secret or confidence betrayed, even a foolish irrelevancy, perhaps.

    "Watch your mouth" seems to me more suggestive of a caution against the use of profanity.

    But idioms like these are usually used pretty freely.  These two are not terribly distinct in meaning, in my opinion.

  5. Slave2No1 profile image61
    Slave2No1posted 10 years ago

    I agree, in general, with the conclusions arrived at and listed here by Doc Snow, pinkboxer and TheJman. However, in my opinion, "Watch your tongue" should actually be "Hold your tongue". I think this sharpens the difference between the two phrase's meanings. "Hold (or watch) your tongue" simply means that you really shouldn't say anything at all, (IE: Keep your trap shut!), whereas "Watch your mouth" strongly implies that you are not to say anything inappropriate, due to being in 'mixed company'.

    'Mixed company' is commonly a group of men and women collectively. It usually is a circumstance where saying the wrong thing could lead to embarrassment. Otherwise, it may mean a group of people with differing national or geographic backgrounds, opposing political views, different cultures, religions, life styles and even a mix of races. It is where something said, without caution, might be taken negatively, resulting in arguments, physical fights &/or out-right war, thereby leading to the possibility of causing serious and long-term ill-feelings and sometimes even death. It all depends on the situation; It could be anything from a 'blue' or dirty (filthy? sexist?) joke, to a (deliberate) nasty slur.

    >>> I hope this helps toward clarifying the respective differences in similar terminology, both in meaning and usage. Therefore, the basic answer to the initial question is No, although some might say "Yes, sort of, but not exactly."


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