This means that information is transmitted through speech and orally, as opposed to written text. People who can understand the language of those speaking will be able to understand what the message is, but those who cannot need some form of translating. This type of communication can be lost by people who are not present as it requires a shared knowledge of the language, though there are ways for it to be recorded later on for others to know about.

The term “By word of mouth” means the process by which one person tells another individual something. The word “mouth” is derived from Old English and is defined as, “the entrance to the digestive tract, including the lips, tongue, throat, and other organs involved in speaking and eating.” It would then make sense that this term would be coined because it describes oral communication.

Speech communication is the process of transmitting messages through spoken word, voice or sound. It is also sometimes called speaking.

When speech communication does not reach its intended recipient, it becomes ‘by word of mouth’. This type of communication relies on human memory to transmit messages. It can be unreliable because humans are fallible and make errors.


The phrase “call someone on the carpet” is used to describe an event where an individual is reprimanded for something they did. For example, if a vice president of a company made a decision that caused economic hardship for the company, it could be considered good business practice to call them on the carpet and reprimand them in person. This conveys to other employees that they will be held accountable for their mistakes and discourage others from doing the same thing in the future.

A display of disapproval or irritation, typically in the form of a reprimand.

Someone is being called on the carpet when they are being scolded for some mistake made. The term originated in the military, where an officer was held responsible for any mistakes made by their subordinates, and therefore called to account before higher-ranking officers.

To call someone on the carpet is when an authority figure has a formal, unpleasant conversation with an employee about their behavior. This can take place in a meeting or in private. It can also be used in a figurative way, such as to reprimand someone in public.

A call someone on the carpet is a figurative expression for to rebuke or reprimand someone severely. It can also mean to take issue with something. This phrase, which is usually used in the vernacular, is sometimes used by higher-level employees to reprimand lower-level employees.
The CEO, when he saw the new payroll reports, called his staff on the carpet and demanded they justify their budget allocations.


A call someone’s bluff is a situation in which someone challenges the truthfulness of another individual’s words or actions by declaring their suspicions, often in an aggressive manner. For example, if one person says they won’t go to the party because they have to study tonight and another person doesn’t believe them, rather than saying “Stop lying!”, the second person might say “You’re just making excuses!

When someone, typically a male, is called on their bluff they are being challenged to produce the goods. That is to say, when they are called on their bluff, they will either have what they claim or be shamed in front of those surrounding them.

A person might call the bluff of someone if they believe that person is lying or trying to fool them. If someone calls someone’s bluff, they may do this by proving the other person’s claim wrong and showing their evidence for why they’re right. This can be done through a series of questions, responses, and assumptions.

3 thoughts on “BY WORD OF MOUTH, CALL (SOMEONE) ON THE CARPET, CALL (SOMEONE’S) BLUFF: American English Idioms #34

  1. Hello, hind from iraq.
    I learned new idiom
    -by word of mouth.

    -call someone on carpet.

    -call someone bluff

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