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Denotation vs. Connotation

on the Q.T.

Secretly, as in They told her on the Q.T. that she was being promoted. This slangy term, in which Q.T. is an abbreviation for “quiet,” was first recorded in 1884.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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