say the quiet part loud

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Used in the 1995 episode "A Star Is Burns" of the American animated TV series The Simpsons, as "I said the quiet part loud and the loud part quiet."

Verb[edit]

say the quiet part loud (third-person singular simple present says the quiet part loud, present participle saying the quiet part loud, simple past and past participle said the quiet part loud)

  1. (idiomatic) To publicly express a sentiment which one is expected to keep to oneself; to reveal an ulterior motive.
    • 2012, Dana Fredsti, Plague Town: An Ashley Parker Novel, Titan Books, chapt. 9:
      “Just what are you trying to say here, Miss Parker?”
      “That you’re a jingoistic idiot.” Yeah, I said the quiet part loud. I blame the pain meds. But there‘s no way I was letting this metal-heavy moron lecture me about my duty to my country, without giving me the chance to make up my own mind.
    • 2012 March 4, Jason Linkins, "TV SoundOff: Sunday Talking Heads", The Huffington Post:
      Santorum says that it’s not about contraception, it’s about any type of medical treatment. Which...seems to me like he’s saying the quiet part loud again! But yes, the Blunt Amendment would give any employer the right to withhold any type of medical care for any reason.
    • 2018 March 17, Chris Hayes, "Chris Hayes: What ‘Law and Order’ Means to Trump", The New York Times:
      Donald Trump is not subtle. While normal political language functions through implication and indirection, Mr. Trump luxuriates in saying the quiet part loud. But in doing so, Mr. Trump exposes what drives the politics of the movement he commands.
    • 2019 July 9, Megan Garber, "When Jeffrey Epstein Joked About Sex Abuse", The Atlantic:
      “When you’re a star, they let you do it,” the president, Epstein’s sometime associate, infamously bragged, once again saying, with stunning efficiency, the quiet part loud.

Further reading[edit]