Put a sock in it

He took the expression too literal, pic: notesfromagrumpy-oldman.blogspot.com

If somebody tells you to “put a sock in it” they tell you to be quiet, to shut up.

It is a colloquial expression and -depending on the context can come across as fairly mild to rather strong.

A father telling his 6-year old who can’t stop talking when he should be eating: “put a sock in it and eat more of your veggies” – mild.

A husband telling his wife who is talking to him about his out of control spending habits: “Just put a sock in it, I don’t want to hear this anymore!” – not so.

The expression dates back to the early days of sound reproduction and radio broadcasts.  It was almost impossible to control the volume of the sounds coming out of the large uncontrollable horns.  The way to turn down the volume was to stuff an actual stock into the horn.  That took care of things.

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