be frightened to death

be frightened to death

be made very alarmed and fearful - informal


frighten the daylights out of

give someone a very severe fright

This expression was a mid 20th-century development from beat the living daylights out of on the premise that the effect of extreme fear is as drastic as physical violence.

1955 - Frank Yerby - The Treasure of Pleasant Valley - Didn't mean to hit him. Meant to throw close to him and scare the living daylights out of him.

frighten the life out of


frightened of your own shadow

be unreasonably timid or nervous

be frightened out of your wits

be extremely frightened

put the frighteners on

threaten or intimidate - British informal

Literally a frightener is a thug who intimidates victims on behalf of a gang.

1998 - John Milne - Alive & Kicking - She decides to put the frighteners on him by hiring me as a private detective.

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