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Definition someone who gossips indiscreetly;
or: disclosing unintentionally
  • His age was beginning to show, his one sign of inner turmoil, the strong line of his jaw melted a little, one became aware of telltale creases forming under his ears, one noticed not his jet-black hair but the gray patches growing at his temples.
    Harper Lee  --  To Kill a Mockingbird
telltale = showing unintentionally
  • He listened for telltale sounds.
    Tim O'Brien  --  Going After Cacciato
  • Glass darted down the unfamiliar corridor, straining her eyes for the telltale silver gleam of an air vent.
    Kass Morgan  --  The 100
  • The others had come pretty regularly and he expected his ring to start moving with the telltale quiver any second.
    D.J. Machale  --  The Merchant of Death
  • But as we neared the aft engine gangways, I heard the telltale vibration of the port propeller.
    Kenneth Oppel  --  Airborn
  • The telltale smell of smoke filtered in through the open windows.
    Alexandra Bracken  --  The Darkest Minds
  • Even Beatrice wasn't sure, turning the viewfinder sideways and upside down as she tried in vain to identify a telltale part of owl anatomy.
    Carl Hiassen  --  Hoot
  • And one of the most telltale things is that the classic autistic individual will laugh out loud and find it to be this moment of real physical comedy.
    Malcolm Gladwell  --  Blink
  • I watched for her hair to curl, the telltale Caster breeze.
    Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl  --  Beautiful Creatures
  • But not before I see telltale redness in his eyes.
    Sabaa Tahir  --  An Ember in the Ashes
  • Up close his skin bore the telltale dark traceries of hunger.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Glass
  • Seeing nothing, he listens for a telltale clip-clop of approaching horseshoes.
    Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard  --  Killing Lincoln
  • At Mira's invitation, she took a seat, folded her hands to keep them from any telltale restless movements.
    J.D. Robb  --  Naked in Death
  • He was hiding his right forearm, which clearly showed the telltale bluish marks of a syringe.
    W. William Winokur  --  The Perfect Game
  • Then Salva saw the telltale flick of a crocodile's tail as it flopped into the water near the young man.
    Linda Sue Park  --  A Long Walk to Water
  • Last week, Tono had found a little rod behind Mama's wedding picture—a telltale sign of bugging.
    Julia Alvarez  --  In the Time of the Butterflies
  • He listened for soldiers as he waited, scanning the inky landscape for the telltale flash of torches.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eragon
  • But then the disease became more active, the volcano started rumbling, oozing lava, spitting telltale traces of sulfurous gas when the wind was right.
    Abraham Verghese  --  Cutting for Stone
  • We knocked on the walls, listening for a telltale hollow sound; we felt for hidden seams.
    Gail Carson Levine  --  Ella Enchanted
  • He wonders if he's running a low fever; this morning he examined his tongue in the mirror for telltale blanching and spots.
    Margaret Atwood  --  Alias Grace

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