Not get a wink of sleep
Not have a wink of sleep
Meaning of Idiom ‘Not Sleep a Wink’
To not sleep a wink means to not sleep at all; to fail to fall asleep or get any sleep. 1Heacock, Paul. Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2010.,2Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
This idiom is always used in the negative. One never says “I slept a wink.” As well, it is almost always used in the past tense. To hear “he is sleeping a wink” would sound odd. Instead, we say “he is asleep” or “he is sleeping.”
Examples Of Use
“The kids never sleep a wink on Christmas eve.”
“This interview has got me so anxious I couldn’t sleep a wink last night.”
“I’d like to go out later but first I need a nap. I haven’t slept a week in the last 24 hours.”
“He didn’t get a wink of sleep before his trip, and sleeping on the plane was impossible.”
First recorded around 1325.
The word wink alludes to closing your eyes for sleep. 3Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
More Idioms Starting with S
More Sleep Idioms
More Wink Idioms
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