There is a proverb which says you can never make the people silent and they will make up any story they want about you. Is there such a proverb in AmE?

I have some suggestions here:

  • You can never silence the crowd.

  • Jar’s mouth may be stopped, a man’s cannot.

Do they sound natural to you?

If not, is there any equivalent? If yes, please let me know what is it?

  • 3
    Are you talking about it in the sense that a ruler cannot silence the populace, or in the sense that people will always gossip and spread rumors?
    – mstorkson
    Jan 26, 2017 at 22:01
  • 1
    If its in the sense that people will always gossip and spread rumours then I think that "haters gonna hate" is quite apt. Jan 26, 2017 at 22:08
  • Your examples don't relate to "they will make up any story they want about you" in your explanation.
    – user3169
    Jan 27, 2017 at 0:07
  • @mstorkson I'm about the second choice when you're going to say that people will gossip and spread rumors always
    – A-friend
    Jan 28, 2017 at 6:33
  • 1
    Sorry, I should have made it clear, I was more joking than anything. I guess it does sound pretty natural in AmE, it was first used by someone famous who was getting a lot of negativity in the media IIRC, and that's why @mstorkson's comment kind of made me think of it. Jan 30, 2017 at 9:15

2 Answers 2


The most appropriate expression I can think of is a 'rumour mill' - an idiomatic expression that relates to the circulation of gossip in a community. For example:

According to the rumour mill, you were seen with John at the party last weekend.

You can't believe everything that comes out of the rumour mill.

It can also be used in the context you describe:

They say you can't stop the rumour mill from turning.

...meaning you can't prevent gossip from happening.

  • What's you opinion about "haters gonna hate" in AmE @mike? Does it indicate the message in my intention? I'm going to convey this message: " People "possibly everyone" has the potential of the negative things about you as a typical and you won't be able to prevent them from doing that."
    – A-friend
    Jan 28, 2017 at 6:45

I know some idioms about rumours and lies but I am not sure they fit.

Many a time a man's mouth broke his nose.

Truth ends but the story continues.

"Gossip is just news running ahead of itself in a red satin dress.”-Liz Smith

Lying through his/her teeth.

Loose lips sink ships.

These are better:

LINK I really liked "let the cat out of the bag", and "gave the game away"

My favourite was : "It is a secret in the Oxford sense. You may tell it to only one person at a time.

Lord Franks Lord Franks (1905-1992) English academic, diplomat and philosopher

which is almost the same as "A secret is something you share with one person at a time."

How about, "Gossip runs like a wildfire"?

I like this article on the subject

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