What does tongue-in-cheek mean?

Definitions for tongue-in-cheek

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word tongue-in-cheek.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. bantering, facetious, tongue-in-cheek(adverb)

    cleverly amusing in tone

    "a bantering tone"; "facetious remarks"; "tongue-in-cheek advice"

  2. banteringly, tongue-in-cheek(adverb)

    in a bantering fashion

    "he spoke to her banteringly"

  3. facetiously, jokingly, tongue-in-cheek(adverb)

    not seriously

    "I meant it facetiously"


  1. tongue-in-cheek(Adjective)

    not intended seriously; jocular or humorous

    He gave a tongue-in-cheek explanation of why the sky was blue, offering a theory about some primordial discount on light blue paint.


  1. Tongue-in-cheek

    Tongue-in-cheek is a phrase used as a figure of speech to imply that a statement or other production is humorously or otherwise not seriously intended and it should not be taken at face value. The facial expression typically indicates that one is joking or making a mental effort. In the past, it may also have indicated contempt, but that is no longer common. By 1842 the phrase had acquired its contemporary meaning similar to "take what I am saying with a grain of salt", indicating that a statement was not meant to be taken seriously. Early users of the phrase include Sir Walter Scott in his 1828 The Fair Maid of Perth.


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of tongue-in-cheek in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of tongue-in-cheek in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Photographer Daniel Kariko:

    It's a fun project, most of all, they're meant to be sort of tongue in cheek.

  2. Paul Stenson:

    My page is run in a tongue-in-cheek way so I can never back down, so I fought fire with fire.

  3. Jason Johnson:

    I have been saying sort of tongue in cheek and very seriously, institutional racism actually works better than this, this is incompetence.

  4. Mark Boughton:

    The kids take it tongue in cheek. They understand, because it's sort of a tradition around here, we go back and forth. But it's all in good fun.

  5. Carly Fiorina:

    Let's just say if the biggest mistake I make is a tongue-in-cheek tweet about a Rose Bowl, the American people will sleep safely when I am president of the United States.

Images & Illustrations of tongue-in-cheek

  1. tongue-in-cheektongue-in-cheektongue-in-cheek

Translations for tongue-in-cheek

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"tongue-in-cheek." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 24 Feb. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/tongue-in-cheek>.

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