Share this entry

Share this page

curtain lecture

Syllabification: cur·tain lec·ture

Definition of curtain lecture in English:

noun

dated
An instance of a wife reprimanding her husband in private.
Example sentences
  • Excellent quotation, but remember that the curtain lecture is on the advantages of poverty, as well as the true provenance of gentility.
  • This, however, was all mere scandal, founded perhaps on her occasionally flourishing a broomstick in the course of a curtain lecture, or raising a storm within doors, as termagant wives are apt to do.
  • Here are microcultural tales of pirates and robbers, blanket fairs (people climbing into bed together to talk before going to sleep), curtain lectures (wives who felt emboldened by the dark to complain to their recumbent husbands) and night-kings (sewer cleaners in Germany).

Origin

mid 17th century: originally a reprimand given behind bed curtains.

Definition of curtain lecture in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day cumbersome
Pronunciation: ˈkʌmbəs(ə)m
adjective
large or heavy and therefore difficult to carry…