The full version of this idiom is ‘Cross my heart and hope to die.’
Meaning of Idiom ‘Cross My heart’
Cross my heart is an emphatic pledge that one is telling the truth, sometimes said while using one hand to make an imaginary X over the heart. 1 Ayto, John. Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms. Oxford: Oxford U, 2010.,2Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.
Cross my heart and hope to die is an idiom most often used by children. While a person can swear to be telling the truth by saying “cross my heart,” one can also ask for a promise from another person:
“I won’t tell the teacher I helped do your homework,” said Sally. “Cross your heart?” said Billy. “Cross my heart and hope to die,” replied Sally.
This children’s idiom probably derived from the Christian practice of making the sign of the cross over one’s breast in order to invoke God’s presence and ask for blessing, assistance, etc. Although this practice is often thought to be unique to Catholicism, in truth, Christians began making this sign very early, even though such a practice is never mentioned in the New Testament of the Christian Bible.
The idiom itself first appeared in the early 1900’s. 3Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
25 Body Parts Idioms | Idioms Online Video
Want to see more videos from Idioms.Online? Subscribe to our YouTube channel!
More Idioms Starting with C
More Body Part Idioms
- Armed to the Teeth
- Elbow Grease
- Elbow Room
- Blow Smoke Up Someone’s Ass
- Give Your Right Arm (for something)
- Give Your Eye Teeth (for something)
- Flip Someone Off
More Cross Idioms
More Heart Idioms
- To Your Heart’s Content
- Why Do We Say By Heart Instead of By Brain to Mean Mermorize?
- My Heart Bleeds For You
- Heart of Gold, to have a
- Eat Your Heart Out
More Religion Related Idioms
This page contains one or more affiliate links. See full affiliate disclosure.
Sources [ + ]