grain of salt

noun phrase

variants or less commonly pinch of salt
: a skeptical attitude
used in the phrase take (something) with a grain/pinch of salt
I take the guidebooks with a grain of salt, preferring to follow my instincts.Daisann McLaneThe malleability of memory … is the first reason why autobiographies should be taken with a grain of salt.Judith Rich Harris

Word History

First Known Use

1647, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of grain of salt was in 1647

Dictionary Entries Near grain of salt

Cite this Entry

“Grain of salt.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Mar. 2023.

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