Meaning of “test the water(s)” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"test the water(s)" in British English

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test the water(s)

to find out what people's opinions of something are before you ask them to do something

(Definition of “test the water(s)” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"test the water(s)" in American English

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test the water(s)

to find out whether something is likely to be successful before you do or try it:

Candidates like to test the waters before running for office.

(Definition of “test the water(s)” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)