Cold Turkey

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To quit any habit all of a sudden


  • It is basically an American expression. The word cold in this term was used for the first time in the 19th century. But it is still not clear what does the word ‘turkey’ mean in this expression. Many people think that the term indicates sudden riddance of any bad habit. Many druggies face shivering and nausea, which makes them feel cold after leaving a drug. This effect has been given the expression of cold turkey. The word ‘cold’ in this expression explains the major part. There are a few other expressions that include word ‘turkey’ in them but their origin is somewhat clear.

James kicked the smoking habit cold turkey and left all of the friends and family amazed.

Submitted on February 25, 2019

Additional definitions for 'Cold Turkey':

cold turkeyThe physiological effects of such a withdrawal.
cold turkeyThe sudden and complete withdrawal of a dependent substance, especially of a drug.
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  1. Alex
    US English

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"Cold Turkey." STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 29 Mar. 2020. <>.

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