bring someone to bay

bring someone to bay :

batten down the hatches

prepare for a difficulty or crisis

Batten down the hatches was originally a nautical term meaning make a ship's hatches secure with gratings and tarpaulins in expectation of stormy weather.

1998 - Oldie - They endured the hard pounding of the Seventies, when Labour battened down the hatches, and soldiered through the follies of the early Eighties.

recharge your batteries

regain your strength and energy by resting and relaxing for a time.

battle of the giants

a contest between two pre-eminent parties

This expression may be a reference to the battle between the giants and gods in Greek mythology.

battle royal

a fiercely contested fight or dispute

1997 - Fred Chappell - Farewell, I'm Bound to Leave You - The boys told no one about the fight... it was a battle royal and went on from two o'clock in the afternoon until Sun down.

battle stations

used as a command or signal to military personnel to take up their positions in preparation for battle - chiefly US

half the battle

an important step towards achieving something

a losing battle

a struggle that is bound to end in failure

a pitched battle

a fierce fight

Literally, a pitched battle is one fought on a predetermined ground (the pitch), as opposed to either a casual skirmish or a running battle.

a running battle

a confrontation that has gone on for a long time

Literally, a running battle is one that is constantly changing its location, the opposite of a pitched battle. The expression running fight was used in the late 17th century to describe a naval engagement in which the fight was continued as one party retreated or fled. Running battle appears to have originated in the mid 20th century.

bay for blood

demand punishment or retribution

bring someone to bay = bring something to bay

trap or corner a person or animal being hunted or chased.

This phrase was originally a medieval hunting term, referring to the position of the quarry when it is cornered by the baying hounds. An animal cornered in this way is said to stand at bay.

hold someone at bay = hold something at bay

prevent someone or something from approaching or having an effect.

keep someone at bay = keep something at bay

prevent someone or something from approaching or having an effect.


of the future

1993 - Mother & Baby - Many mums-to-be report that small frequent snacks are easier to keep down than three large meals a day.

be there for someone

be available to support or comfort someone who is experiencing difficulties or adversities.

the be-all and end-all

a feature of an activity or a way of life that is of greater importance than any other – informal

draw a bead on = get a bead on

take aim at with a gun - chiefly North American

1994 - Ontario Out of Doors - Few moose will pose majestically right at the water's edge while you draw a bead on them.

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