double take

noun
a rapid or surprised second look, either literal or figurative, at a person or situation whose significance had not been completely grasped at first: His friends did a double take when they saw how much weight he had lost.

Origin:
1935–40, Americanism

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World English Dictionary
double take
 
n
(esp in comedy) a delayed reaction by a person to a remark, situation, etc

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Slang Dictionary

double take definition


  1. n.
    a surprised second look at something. : Fred did a double take, then recognized Britney.
Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions by Richard A. Spears.Fourth Edition.
Copyright 2007. Published by McGraw-Hill Education.
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Example sentences
But first there was a definite moment of double take, and then a scramble to confirm that this wasn't some elaborate hoax.
The double take you did when you realized you were on the air was hilarious.
As he walked toward the rehabilitation unit, patients did a double take and reached down to stroke his back.
It's a rare event in the art world that can still evoke a double take.
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