Dictionary > Telltale

Telltale

telltale
Telling tales; babbling. The telltale heart.
1. One who officiously communicates information of the private concerns of others; one who tells that which prudence should suppress.
2. A movable piece of ivory, lead, or other material, connected with the bellows of an organ, that gives notice, by its position, when the wind is exhausted.
3. A mechanical attachment to the steering wheel, which, in the absence of a tiller, shows the position of the helm. A compass in the cabin of a vessel, usually placed where the captain can see it at all hours, and thus inform himself of the vessel’s course.
4. (Science: machinery) A machine or contrivance for indicating or recording something, particularly for keeping a check upon employees, as factory hands, watchmen, drivers, check takers, and the like, by revealing to their employers what they have done or omitted.
5. (Science: zoology) The tattler. See Tattler.


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