Kuchi wo Suppaku Suru (口を酸っぱくする – Telling Over and Over Again)

  • Kuchi wo Suppaku Suru


    Telling someone the same thing over and over again is expressed as kuchi wo suppaku suru (口を酸っぱくする) in Japanese.

    Since kuchi (口) means “mouth,” suppaku/suppai (酸っぱく/酸っぱい) means “sour,” and suru (する) means “to make,” the literal meaning of kuchi wo suppaku suru is “to make one’s mouth sour”
    「口」は “mouth”、「酸っぱく」は “sour”、「する」は “to make” を意味するので、「口を酸っぱくする」の文字どおりの意味は “to make one’s mouth soar” となります。

    The etymology of this phrase is not very clear, but the following two theories are possible:

    One theory is that it came from the fact that when one’s mouth dries out due to continuous talking, the oral cavity becomes acidic, which lead to a sour feeling.

    The other theory says that it came when you tell the same thing repeatedly, your facial expression would become as if you have eaten something sour.

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