Meaning of “have a sting in the/its tail” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"have a sting in the/its tail" in British English

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have a sting in the/its tail

UK

If something, such as a story or joke, has a sting in the/its tail, it has a surprising or unpleasant part that only becomes clear at the end.

(Definition of “have a sting in the/its tail” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)