to sweep something under the carpet

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - sweep under the carpet

"to sweep something under the carpet"

to avoid discussing or dealing with (by hiding) something embarrassing, unpleasant or damaging


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - sweep under the carpet

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  Did you think you could just hide the fact that you overspent your expense account by ten thousand dollars?

Colleague 2:  Those were legitimate expenses.

Colleague 1:  Then why did you try to sweep them under the carpet by transferring those expenses to different cost accounting departments?

Colleague 2:  Um.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - sweep under the carpet

Two parents are talking ...

Husband:  Our son is fine.

Wife:  Are you ignoring the fact that his school grades are falling? What about this new group of unsavory friends he has started hanging around with?  He has also quit all his sports teams.

Husband:  Just normal teenage behavior.

Wife:  Maybe you can sweep his behavior under the carpet but I think we need to talk about the possibility that our son is doing drugs.

Husband:  No. I can not think of our son that way.

to sweep something under the carpet - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   755   click for frequency by country

to sweep something under the carpet - Gerund Form:

Sweeping the fact that a government minister stole public funds under the carpet happens to protect the political party.

to sweep something under the carpet - Examples:

1)  ... yet the assessment report, whose recommendations the Government has decided to sweep under the carpet, came out in December, months after the start of the project.

2)  ... assured that the matter would not be sweep under the carpet as justice would be served for the deceased. 

3)  I don't want to sweep under the carpet the fact there are some very young people who commit serious offences.

4)  ... had wished to sweep under the carpet has resurfaced. And as usual, government and the army will not admit culpability.

5)  ... and not sweep under the carpet the mistakes being made.

6)  ... to the bond scam which the Prime Minister is trying to sweep under the carpet, interest rates rose by about sixty percent and the government ended up having to ...

7)  Some of the cases were so egregious it made it difficult to sweep under the carpet.

8)  ... agency has developed a tendency of blaming drivers wholesomely while they intentionally sweep under the carpet government's contributory negligence and failure.

9)  I presumed they will just keep silent and sweep under the carpet just like the PA case. 

10)  Where we really fall down is we're trying to sweep under the carpet the long-term, most fundamental threat to the reef.

11)  ... was a fraudulent subsidy regime, she played deaf and tried to sweep under the carpet the demand for accountability on how the fuel subsidy funds was managed.

12)  It's not something we can sweep under the carpet. Youngsters from across colleges are on drugs.

13)  ... no amount of political patronage will ever be able to sweep under the carpet the illegalities, non-compliance and surreptitious circumvention of procedure.

14)  "We have concrete information that we can not sweep under the carpet," a police spokesperson was quoted.

15)  Army absolutely does not want to sweep under the carpet the issue of mental health.

16)  ... fewer children in public high schools is not something the government can sweep under the carpet.

17)  One simply can not sweep under the carpet that more than 2,000 people died.

18)  ... such as black townships, ugly truths we should not seek to sweep under the carpet, away from public view.

19)  ... one of those things that we shouldn't necessarily try to sweep under the carpet and hide.

20)  It is delay, delay, delay, sweep under the carpet, hope that everyone will forget about it so that they are not accountable.