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

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.Surprising and shockingMaking people sad, shocked and upset
(Definition of have a sting in the/its tail from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

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