“Coming out about illicit drug use: ‘The HUSH-HUSH attitude has to end’ — A campaign to decriminalise illicit drugs is asking people to speak up about their recreational use as a way to de-stigmatise and change the conversation.”
Gary Nunn - The Guardian (17 July 2021)
- kept secret: known only to a few people
The Britannica Dictionary
Although the adjective hush-hush was first recorded in 1915, the single word hush is attested from the 1680s as an interjection meaning “be quiet”. This in turn derives from the Middle English huisht (late 14th century).
“Hush your mouth”, also meaning “be quiet”, first appeared in 1878.
"Hush up" meaning "suppress talk for secrecy’s sake" is attested from the 1630s and "hush-money" is from 1709.
- a deathly hush = a sudden and complete silence (Todesstille, Grabesstille)
- hush money = money paid to someone to prevent them from disclosing embarrassing or discreditable information (Schweigegeld)
- hush-a-bye / hushaby = a lullaby used to soothe babies to sleep (Wiegenlied)
- hush puppies (US) = cornmeal dough shaped into small balls and fried in deep fat (frittierte Klößchen aus Maismeh)
SYNONYMS for "secretive in nature"
The large number of English synonyms says something about the importance of this attribute in human affairs
arcane, artful, back-alley, backroom, backstage, backstair/s, behind-the-scenes, behind someone’s back, between ourselves, between you and me/and the bedpost/doorpost/ gatepost/wall, bottled up, buried, carefully guarded, censored, circumspect, clandestine, classified, cloak-and-dagger, closely guarded, close to one’s chest, confidential, conspiratorial, controlled, covered up, covert, discreet, disguised, dissembled, dissimulated, duplicitous, elusive, enigmatic, enshrouded, eyes-only, for (your) eyes only (FYEO), foxy, guarded, guileful, hidden from sight/view, hole-in-the-corner, hugger-mugger, HUSH-HUSH, hushed up, in camera, incog, incognito, in confidence, inconspicuous, indirect, in holes and corners, inmost, inner, innermost, in private, in secret, inside, insidious, in strict confidence, intimate, invisible, concealed, kept secret, lost to view, low down, masked, mom US, mum UK, murky, need to know, noiseless, non-public, non-shareable, not for circulation, not for publication, not for public consumption, not in the public domain, not open, not public, not to be disclosed, not to be made public, not to be mentioned, not to be quoted, not visible, off-the-record, off limits, offstage, off the record, one-on-one, on the QT, on the quiet, on the sly, out-of-the-way, out of bounds, out of sight, out of view, private, privileged, privy, recondite, regulated,reserved, restricted (access), screened, sealed, secret, secreted, secretive, sensitive, shady, shifty, shonky, shrouded, silent, single-serve, single-serving, stealthy, strictly confidential, sub-rosa, surreptitious, tight-lipped, to be kept under wraps, top-secret, unauthorised UK, unauthorized US, unbowed, uncertified, under-the-counter, under-the-table, undercover, underground, underhand, underhanded, under one’s hat,under the table, under wraps, undisclosed, undistributable, undivulged, undocumented, unendorsed, unpublished, unratified, unrecounted, unreported, unrevealed, unsaid, unsanctioned, unshareable, unspoken, unstated, unsubstantiated, untold, unvoiced, veiled, with a lid on, within these four walls
SMUGGLE OWAD into a conversation today, say something like:
“The company is conducting a HUSH-HUSH investigation into the missing money.”
THANKS to Jamie for suggesting today’s OWAD
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