give (someone) pause

idiom
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of give (someone) pause

: to cause (someone) to stop and think about something carefully or to have doubts about something
  • I was going to ask her for help, but the look on her face gave me pause.

Word by Word Definitions

give play
  1. : to make a present of

  2. : to grant or bestow by formal action

  3. : to accord or yield to another

  1. : capacity or tendency to yield to force or strain : flexibility

  2. : the ability of a material to bend or stretch

someone play
  1. : some person : somebody

pause play
  1. : a temporary stop

  2. : a break in a verse

  3. : a brief suspension of the voice to indicate the limits and relations of sentences and their parts

  1. : to stop temporarily

  2. : to linger for a time

  3. : to cause to pause : stop


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