Expression: "You don't say!"

Dear friends

When do we use the given expression?

  • You don’t say!

Thanks a lot


You can use this expression when you are surprised at what someone has said. You could also say: “Really?”

Hi Conchita,

surprised… but negative or positive?

Does ‘You don’t say so!’ mean that a person, who exclaims, has some doubts about what he/she was talked (and voices the doubt)?

Yes, that’s right, Tamara. You can also say that when you find something hard to believe. Sometimes it is used ironically, as well.

Thank you, Conchita, for the answer (and for told)

So, as I understand, it would be generally inappropriate (not polite) for a pupil to exclaim it when talking with a teacher. For example.

It would probably depend on the relationship between teacher and student, on the tone with which it is spoken, on the teacher’s sense of humour, perhaps on their ages, etc. But, basically, I agree with you that it might not be a good idea to say that to a teacher — and definitely not if it is said with irony :slight_smile: ! When students question something the teacher has said, they should express their doubts openly, I think.