I am thinking there could be an idiom that states that you or someone revealed a secret unintentionally? Can you think of an idiom like that? I am looking for an idiom I can use to write a blog post about the recent incident where Secretary Pompeo unintentionally revealed the dirty secrets behind the CIA.
Let the cat out of the bag is the idiomatic answer to this.
Oxford (and google dictionary): Reveal a secret carelessly or by mistake.
Edit: It appears commentators dispute the 'unintentionality' of this phrase. Further definitions in support:
Dictionary.com: to divulge a secret, especially inadvertently or carelessly
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Yes, there are a number which imply "by accident":
Mike Pompeo let slip some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo spilled some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo let out some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo blabbed some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo gave away some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo blurted out some of the CIA's secrets.
If you want to be clear, you can always specify that the action was unintentional:
Mike Pompeo unwittingly spilled the beans on some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo inadvertently let the cat out of the bag on some of the CIA's secrets.
There are others that mean "reveal", but you need to specify whether this was intentional or unintentional: divulge, disclose, leak, expose, confess etc.
Mike Pompeo unintentionally divulged some of the CIA's secrets.
Mike Pompeo accidentally leaked some of the CIA's secrets.
and so on.
(Edit) As a few of the comments suggest, all of these verbs can also be used for intentional disclosure. Example:
Mike Pompeo may have deliberately let slip some of the CIA's secrets.
I just feel the ones in the first part, by default, sound unintentional. By making them intentional it adds the nuance of duplicity -- which is to say, the subject is only pretending to "accidentally" reveal some information.
Still, opinions on this will vary from person to person.
protected by Community♦ Jul 26 at 22:10
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