wet-blanket

[wet-blang-kit]
verb (used with object)
  1. to extinguish (a fire) with a wet blanket.
  2. to dampen the enthusiasm or enjoyment of (a person, group, etc.).

Origin of wet-blanket

First recorded in 1865–70

wet blanket

noun
  1. a blanket dampened with water so as to extinguish a fire.
  2. a person or thing that dampens enthusiasm or enjoyment: Nobody asked him to join the group because he's such a wet blanket.

Origin of wet blanket

First recorded in 1655–65
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


Examples from the Web for wet-blanket

Historical Examples of wet-blanket

  • But I should be a wet-blanket altogether, and, moreover, I could not stand the Tutissimus.

    Lord Randolph Churchill

    Winston Spencer Churchill

  • Will you be kind enough Mizzi, to tell me why you surround me with the wet-blanket of your wrath?

    The Gay Adventure

    Richard Bird

  • As somebody had quickly said, sharpening his young wit, he was more of a wet-blanket than a Mackintosh.

    Sinister Street, vol. 2

    Compton Mackenzie

  • The average clergyman, I am afraid, is regarded in these days as something of a bore, a wet-blanket even at tea-parties.

    Painted Windows

    Harold Begbie


British Dictionary definitions for wet-blanket

wet blanket

noun
  1. informal a person whose low spirits or lack of enthusiasm have a depressing effect on others
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

wet-blanket in Culture

wet blanket

Someone who dampens enthusiasm: “We were all having a good time until Harold walked in and started acting like a wet blanket.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with wet-blanket

wet blanket

A person who discourages enjoyment or enthusiasm, as in Don't be such a wet blanket—the carnival will be fun! This expression alludes to smothering a fire with a wet blanket. [Early 1800s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.