hem and hawidiom
Definition of hem and haw
chiefly US, informal
1 : to stop often and change what one is saying during speech because one is not sure of what to say or because one is trying to avoid saying something The question surprised her and she hemmed and hawed a bit before answering.
2 : to take a long time before making a decision about what to do The city council hemmed and hawed for a year before deciding to build the new school.
Love words? Need even more definitions?Merriam-Webster unabridged
Words at Play
- 'Piano': Its Name Is Only Half the Story
- The Good, The Bad, & The Semantically Imprecise - 11/15/19
- 'Cliché': We’ve Heard It All Before
- 'Bounty Hunter': A Hollywood Invention
Ask the Editors
- Pass the Little Ribbons: A Pasta Word Quiz Take the quiz
- Confusing Words—A Quiz Take the quiz
- Spell It Take the quiz
- Dictionary Devil Play the game