Clouer le bec

Clouer le bec à quelqu’un, “to shut someone up”, usually means the person won an argument, leaving the opponent speechless. In this expression, clouer has nothing to do with the homophone verb clouer, “to nail”. It comes from cloer, “to close”. So how about le bec (“beak” in English)? Well, it is a slang word for the mouth and is used in a lot of idiomatic expressions in French. From there, clouer le bec is an expression easy to understand! 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s