In the Heat of the Moment (Origin)

What Is the Origin of the Saying "In the Heat of the Moment"?

The term "in the heat of the moment" means without thinking due to emotion induced by the situation.

Table of Contents

  • English Proverbs and Idioms Test
  • More Proverbs, Sayings, and Idioms
In the Heat of the Moment (Origin)
The term "in the heat of the moment" functions like an adverb. In other words, it describes how an action is performed. It is similar to "irrationally" or "illogically," but it adds the idea of a temporary lowering of the usual levels of rationality due to a sudden wave of emotion.

Examples of Use:

  • I must apologize for my words. I said them in the heat of the moment.
  • He resigned in the heat of the moment when Sarah got the promotion he was expecting.
  • My client struck the plaintiff in the heat of the moment.
  • I ended the call in the heat of the moment.
The origin of this phrase is uncertain, but it is only a short mind-leap from a red, angered face to the notion of "heat." In fact, adjectives related to heat are commonly used to describe strong emotions:
  • hot blooded, hot headed, heated argument, melt my heart

Previous and Next Sayings

English Proverbs and Idioms Test

More Proverbs, Sayings, and Idioms

author logo

This page was written by Craig Shrives.