Vent one’s spleen

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Vent one’s spleen is an idiom that is hundreds of years old. We will examine the meaning of the idiom vent one’s spleen, where it came from, and some examples of its use in sentences.

To vent one’s spleen means to air one’s grievances, to make enraged complaints, or to express one’s anger. The idiom vent one’s spleen is related to the idea that different organs of the body are the repositories of different emotions. Most people are familiar with the idea that the heart is the seat of the emotion of love. The spleen has been considered the seat of anger in the human body since medieval times. The idiom vent one’s spleen has been in use since the 1600s. Related phrases are vents one’s spleen, vented one’s spleen, venting one’s spleen.


There are similar places to vent your spleen in Houston and Toronto, and Anger Room is offering franchises to entrepreneurs who want to open facilities in other cities. (The Kiplinger Newsletter)

(In all seriousness, if you really did have a holiday nightmare and need to sort it out – not simply vent your spleen – see our guide). (The Telegraph)

But I don’t think that an award show in front of millions of people is the place to vent your spleen about somebody that you disagree with politically. (The Daily Mail)

You might want to vent your spleen at the execrable service, but what do you want them to do about it? (The Independent)