These were the first ones that popped up in my mind (disclaimer: I'm not a native English speaker):

He threw me the news a month ago.

He flung the news at me a month ago.

He dropped the news on me a month ago.

Thy don't appear on Google, so I suspect they are not grammatical or idiomatic. But I'm looking something along the lines. Any suggestions?

  • 19
    He broke the news to me a month ago.
    – Hot Licks
    Dec 1, 2016 at 13:54
  • I like break best but it doesn't necessarily encapsulate the suddenly aspect that the OP was looking for.
    – Hank
    Dec 1, 2016 at 14:04
  • 4
    The choice of word depends on whether it's good news or bad news, anticipated or surprise, whether the disclosure was intentional or accidental, benign or malicious, and so on...
    – smci
    Dec 1, 2016 at 16:07
  • 1
    I'm just guessing, but the examples used by OP suggest that ''suddenly'' was used to mean "unexpected" from the listener's viewpoint, rather than the speaker's. Which in turn supports the idea that "spring on" is more appropriate than "blurt out". "Blurt out" would be used in a context where the speaker cannot contain the news.
    – simonpa71
    Dec 2, 2016 at 15:10
  • If the news was completely unexpected and/or something shocking, you could say he blindsided you with the news or that you were blindsided by the news. Dec 2, 2016 at 22:41

10 Answers 10


I would use

He sprang the news on me.

spring on v. To present or disclose something to someone unexpectedly or suddenly: They sprang the news on all their friends that they were having a baby. The company president sprang on us the plan to lay people off.

  • 1
    Agreed, I was a bit rushed earlier. Fixed now.
    – JonLarby
    Dec 1, 2016 at 20:31
  • 1
    The use of "Sprang" in this context is derived from its use to describe causing an open trap to close, so it's really more suited to describe being forced into a situation than to describe the relaying of information. Idiomatically speaking, a word like "dump" or "drop", or even "unload" that conveys directional motion would be more apt. Dec 1, 2016 at 21:45
  • 6
    @phantombread I get what you're saying, but to spring news on someone is a widely recognized idiom. This is a very good answer.
    – barbecue
    Dec 2, 2016 at 14:11

He blurted out the news.

Blurt (MW)

to utter abruptly and impulsively

  • 1
    If you "blurt" out something, it may imply you accidentally said something that you failed to restrain yourself from saying.
    – Jamin Grey
    Dec 4, 2016 at 7:18

He broke the news to me a month ago.

This is by far the most idiomatic expression for this meaning, and implies a degree of suddenness to the action -- "He told me a month ago" would likely be used if it were not a somewhat abrupt announcement.

  • 1
    Very common to see "Breaking News" in print newspapers and TV news. Although it indicates how new the information is, not how suddenly it is delivered. Dec 2, 2016 at 15:02
  • 1
    @NigelTouch - The use of the idiom is an attempt by the press source to make the news seem urgent.
    – Hot Licks
    Dec 2, 2016 at 18:04

You could consider using drop the news bomb if you want to emphasize the sudden and shocking aspect as in:

The level of excitement among basketball and cartoon lovers the entire world jumped to an extreme level Monday when The Hollywood Reporter dropped the news bomb: Justin Lin, best known for several entries in the "Fast and the Furious" series, is co-writing "Space Jam 2," starring LeBron James.


Trump’s senior adviser, Daniel Scavino, Jr., was among the first to drop the news bomb today.


  • 6
    This was the first one I thought of. I would not necessarily expect the word news to appear, though—for example, She dropped the bomb over breakfast followed by whatever the news is.
    – 1006a
    Dec 1, 2016 at 16:19

If you want to underline the fact that the news were disclosed suddenly you may use the idiomatic expression:

to come out with:

  • to say something suddenly and unexpectedly:
    • He comes out with the strangest things! She comes out with some good ideas though.

Cambridge Dictionary

  • He came out with the news one month ago.

To drop a bombshell means to disclose surprising and far-reaching news in a sudden manner.

To break the news simply means to disclose information for the first time. In my mind, it has some connotation of suddenness, but I suppose it doesn't have to.


The first two sentences you propose don't work at all. The third is okay, I guess, but here's a great way to express your idea:

drop a bomb

to announce shocking or startling news: Friday is a good day to drop a bomb like that. It gives the business world the weekend to recover.

For your example:

He dropped the bomb last month. (Perhaps he announced the company had been sold.)


By far the best answer given above for your discrete situation is:

"He broke the news"


--"Dropping the bomb"--idiomatic at best, only useful if the information shared will likely be a large (usually upsetting) surprise/ultimatum to the receiver.

--"Spitting out" implies unwillingness on the part of the spitter to share the information, whether or not it is secret information--it implies force of words or brief words but not willingly. In past tense, it is also used to imply something completely different--disgust. (i.e. "You're disgusting!", she spat.)

--"Blurt"/"Spilling" carries the opposite connotation to "spitting out"-- that the speaker can't wait to get it out, but a blurt is often unintentional or uncontrolled, and the author is passing minor judgement on the speaker for being unable to control themselves. It's used of immature speakers (ie children) or overly impulsive speakers, people who can't stop talking or control their words, not just the sudden ones.

What you want to get across is that the news is suddenly shared.


If the scenario is that someone has some news and really wants to tell someone, but is showing temporary self-restraint, then, if they suddenly do tell someone, you can refer to this as “spitting it out”.


Alice: “What’s up? You know something.”
Bob: “I don't, honest.”
Alice “You do; just spit it out.”
Bob: “OK, OK; I ate all the chocolate biscuits.”


He took a sip of water, and without hesitation, he revealed details of the merger to me (his revelation was somewhat unexpected, but not surprising, as it confirmed my belief that the rumor of an upcoming merger was, in fact, true).

  • "Without hesitation" sounds much more deliberate than the sudden action the OP seems to be looking for.
    – user89175
    Dec 3, 2016 at 20:48
  • The hearing of this news was somewhat 'sudden' or 'unexpected' to the listener, not the one who revealed and I was hoping to imply with the water, it was at lunch or dinner, with only the two persons. It wasn't something the listener would have expected at that moment or from that person. Confirming a rumor might have seemed sudden depending on where they were in conversation. However, sudden action, in this case, would not be the teller, although it could be something he decided to go ahead and tell. Perhaps, if they were talking about company business, and he felt this was the right time Dec 3, 2016 at 21:11

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