waste one's breath

Idioms & Phrases

waste one's breath

Speak in vain (because no one agrees), as in Don't waste your breath complaining to the supervisorit won't help. This notion was first recorded about 1400 as wasting words. The exact idiom was first recorded in 1667. Also see save one's breath.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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