take a cue from


take a (one’s) cue from


  • to do what is recommended by someone else
  • follow the lead of another
  • to be highly influenced by someone or something
  • to use someone else’s experience as your guide

Example Sentences

  1. I’m not good at belly dance, so I’ll take my cue from you.
  2. Take a cue from the professionals and start your business as soon as possible.
  3. Take a cue from your friend and learn how to enjoy life.
  4. I don’t know how to cook the rice. I need to take my cue from you.
  5. She is a fresher web designer and takes her cue to design a new website from her senior web developer.
  6. Italy should have taken a cue from Japan to prevent the covid-19 pandemic.
  7. Maria should take a cue from her mother to be a successful woman.


The idiom is speculated to be originated in the mid-1700s.

One of the oldest printed records of the phrase was recorded by Samuel Richardson in 1754, The History of Sir Charles Grandison – In a Series of Letters, Published from the Originals (Volume 1).

“But, what, Sir Charles? (come, I had rather take my cue from you, than any-body; what) are the signs which I am to give to be allowed –”

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