to get someone to admit something

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Mmustafa, Aug 6, 2008.

  1. Mmustafa Senior Member

    Egypt, Arabic
    Hi all,

    I want to express in one word the following meaning: "to get/impel someone to admit something, either it is a fact, an error, etc."

    Thanks for your help ​
     
  2. cycloneviv

    cycloneviv Senior Member

    Perth, Western Australia
    English - Australia
    Hi Mmustafa,

    Can you give us an entire sentence using this phrase? I think it might be very unlikely that we have a single word in English that expresses this idea, however giving us the context might be helpful. :)
     
  3. Mmustafa Senior Member

    Egypt, Arabic
    Thank you, Cycloneviv, for the reply. You may consider the following:

    You entered your kid's room and found it a mess. You want to know that the kid, not his sibling, turned the room like that, and thus you posed a series of questions to get him admit that he did so.
     
  4. Meeracat Senior Member

    Not one word, but you might get him/her to confess or own up.
     
  5. AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States
    Hi Mmustafa,

    I'm not completely sure this is what you're looking for.

    It's a slang word used in a variety of situations and especially used by young people, so if you're directing it at one of your kids, it might apply here on their mental level.

    You might say it this way:
    "Okay, spill. Who did all this?/Who made this mess?"

    Spill is slang for getting someone to confess or tell everything they know.

    It's mentioned here:
    SPILL

    Again, I'm not 100% certain this serves your purpose, but I thought I'd offer it and see. If you want a more formal word, this isn't it!

    AngelEyes
     
  6. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Jerusalem
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    I'm thinking of two possibilities. If you mean to talk until the other person agrees with your point of view, you convince him. If you mean you compel someone to do something even though they don't want to, you coerce him. But like everyone else, I'm not really clear on what you're looking for.
     
  7. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Doesn't "spill" mean "confess", as distinct from "get someone to confess", AngelEyes? (I always hear it as short for "spill the beans".)

    Mmustafa, I can't think of any word with the meaning "get someone to admit something".
     
  8. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Jerusalem
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    "Spill" just means "tell me that secret".

    The messy bedroom scenario sounds like an interrogation or trying to force a confession.
     
  9. AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States
    Like the rest of you, I'm not quite sure what we're actually trying to convey.

    Is it a word that would actually fit into the sentence?
    Or a word just to describe in general what the person is doing to the child?

    Yes, Lube, spill comes from "spill the beans" and usually means to confess a lot of information.

    I've seen it used to mean to admit you did something, too.

    I can see myself using it under these circumstances but there might be body language added and other stuff surrounding my doing it...:rolleyes:

    A more likely way would be two teenage girls gossiping and one says, "Okay, spill. What did you do on your date last night?"

    Still, a mom might say, "Okay, spill. Who made this mess?"

    AngelEyes
     
  10. Mmustafa Senior Member

    Egypt, Arabic
    Thank you all. As you said, AngelEyes, it is "a word just to describe in general what the person is doing to the child?".
     
  11. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Nunty's "interrogation" made me think of the verb "interrogate".

    You could use you interrogated him to replace all the bolded words in your sentence. Is that what you're looking for?
     
  12. AngelEyes Senior Member

    English - United States

    Okay!

    Neutral: I questioned him.
    Intermediate pressure on the child: I interrogated him. (Like Loob said)
    Heavy-hitting parental pressure: I grilled him. (In AE, that's giving someone the third degree.)


    AngelEyes
     
  13. Mmustafa Senior Member

    Egypt, Arabic
    I do thank you AngelEyes, Loob, Nun-Translator, Meeracat, and cycloneviv for your time on my post. Have a nice time. :)
     

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