VIDEO FOR TEA
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Idioms for tea
Origin of tea
OTHER WORDS FROM teatealess, adjective
WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH teatea , tee.
ABOUT THIS WORD
What else does tea mean?
Best served piping hot, tea is slang for “gossip,” a juicy scoop, or other personal information.
Where did the term tea come from?
Tea refers to gossip or other private information. As far as we can tell, it was steeped in Black drag culture.
One theory connects tea to the celebrated drag performer The Lady Chablis, who is quoted in the 1994 bestseller Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil: “Yeah, my T. My thing, my business, what’s goin’ on in my life.” T, here, is short for truth.
The slang tea may riff on The Lady Chablis’s T as well as on tea parties, at which well-to-do Southern women are popularly imagined to gossip. The term is especially found in the expression spilling the tea, or dishing out the gossip, associated with Black gay slang.
Tea spread thanks in part to RuPaul’s Drag Race starting in 2009. The reality show frequently uses (spilling the) tea for “gossip.” Meanwhile, talk show host Wendy Williams, has been known to drink actual tea while spilling some tea on her Wendy Williams Show.
One internet-famous tea-sipper is The Muppets‘s Kermit the Frog. In it, he is smugly taking a sip of Lipton tea and remarking “But that’s none of my business,” used to throw shade. The meme emerged as early as 2014 and is sometimes used, true to the slang tea, in contexts of gossip.
How to use the term tea
The Black gay and drag communities stills love tea, which spread into a more mainstream vernacular thanks to the popularity of RuPaul’s Drag Race.
clean up on aisle 8 cause the tea has been spilled https://t.co/sda5WuJsNT
— 🅱️ristian (@twerk4gaga) June 11, 2015
You can spill the tea like you would use the more common expression spill the beans.
This is the gif I’m going to use when there’s drama. Spill the tea sis I’m ready pic.twitter.com/md0fGYxeto
— Michelle (@bbyhoneyhaz) May 7, 2019
Other tea expressions include no tea no shade, what’s the tea sis, and that’s the tea.
i’m 110% sure that hailey bieber is pregnant and that’s the tea for today
— cecilie (@ceciliesw) May 7, 2019
It’s also common to see tea being used as a reaction to someone revealing some sensational information (e.g., Tea!).
More examples of tea:
“East St. Louis may not have the staple food like the overrated Harold’s Chicken (all tea, no shade). However, it was the mom and pop shops from your everyday neighbors, educators and church folks that ensured anyone could have a cooked meal when asked.”
—Alana Marie, The Root, February 2019
“When Drake dropped his highly anticipated Scorpion album on June 29, it’s safe to say that everyone was shook by a handful of lyrics in “Finesse,” which seemed to hint at a romance with the model.”
—Lara Walsh, Elite Daily, June 2018
This content is not meant to be a formal definition of this term. Rather, it is an informal summary that seeks to provide supplemental information and context important to know or keep in mind about the term’s history, meaning, and usage.
Example sentences from the Web for tea
Senseless bureaucracy is part of what spawned the Tea Party.
So it was ironic a couple of months later when the Tea Partiers were railing against it—it had already expired.To GOP Congress, as Usual, It’s Welfare on the Chopping Block|Monica Potts|December 25, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Some imagine Senator Elizabeth Warren as the charismatic leader of a progressive version of the “tea party.”
At the hospital, I was told to wait, and was given some tea by a nurse.I Was Gang Raped at a UVA Frat 30 Years Ago, and No One Did Anything|Liz Seccuro|December 16, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Finally, he says, “Would you like a cup of tea or something?”Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days|David Freeman|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The apology for tea was brought, and both accepted it, talking of trivialities.Scarlet and Hyssop|E. F. Benson
When we went to tea or dinner with these people Jimmie and I had to be dragged along like dogs who are muzzled for the first time.Abroad with the Jimmies|Lilian Bell
Mrs. Peterkin frugally suggested that they might now keep it for the next day, as to-day was almost gone, and they had had tea.The Peterkin Papers|Lucretia P. Hale
Hyson tea and Souchong mixed together, half and half, is a pleasant beverage, and is more healthy than green tea alone.Mrs. Hale's Receipts for the Million|Sarah Josepha Hale
He poured out his tea and sat down in a chair opposite to her, and close to her.The Woman With The Fan|Robert Hichens
British Dictionary definitions for tea
- the dried shredded leaves of this shrub, used to make a beverage by infusion in boiling water
- such a beverage, served hot or iced
- (as modifier)tea caddy; tea urn
- any of various plants that are similar to Camellia sinensis or are used to make a tealike beverage
- any such beverage
- Also called: afternoon tea a light meal eaten in mid-afternoon, usually consisting of tea and cakes, biscuits, or sandwiches
- (as modifier)a tea party
- Also called: high tea afternoon tea that also includes a light cooked dish
Word Origin for tea
Idioms and Phrases with tea
see cup of tea; not for all the tea in china; tempest in a teapot.