alive(redirected from aliveness)
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alive to (something)
Alert to, cognizant of, or having familiarity with something. Trust me, I'm alive to the concerns expressed by my constituents. You need to be alive to the dangers of drunk driving.
alive and kickingand alive and well
Fig. well and healthy. Jane: How is Bill since his illness last month? Mary: Oh; he's alive and kicking. The last time I saw Tom, he was alive and well.
alive with (people or things)
Fig. covered with, filled with, or active with people or creatures. Look! Ants everywhere. The floor is alive with ants!
Land(s) sakes (alive)!and Sakes alive!
Rur. My goodness! (A mild oath.) Lands sakes! I sure am glad to get home! Sakes alive! Can't you even set the table without making a fuss?
See also: land
Act alert and responsive! "Come on, Fred! Get moving! Look alive!" shouted the coach, who was not happy with Fred's performance. Bill: Look alive, Bob! Bob: I'm doing the best I can.
See also: look
more dead than alive
Fig. exhausted; in very bad condition; near death. (Almost always an exaggeration.) We arrived at the top of the mountain more dead than alive. The marathon runners stumbled one by one over the finish line, more dead than alive.
skin someone alive
Fig. to be very angry with someone; to scold someone severely. (Fig. on being angry enough to do this kind of bodily harm to someone.) I was so mad at Jane that I could have skinned her alive. If I don't get home on time, my parents will skin me alive.
alive and wellalso alive and kicking
1. involved or active As long as our star players are alive and well, this championship isn't over yet.
2. having influence or importance Traditional jazz is still alive and well in New Orleans.
eat you alive
1. to cause you to suffer Without my own lawyer, the defendants' lawyers would have eaten me alive in court. The state income tax is just eating me alive, so I think I may move.
2. to bite you repeatedly The only bad thing about camping by the river was the mosquitoes that ate us alive.
Usage notes: used only of insects, as in the example
be alive and kicking
to continue to live or exist and be full of energy She said she'd seen him last week and he was alive and kicking. Theatre in Madrid is alive and kicking.
be alive and well
to continue to be popular or successful Despite rumours to the contrary, feminism is alive and well. (often + and doing sth) Quadrophonic sound is alive and well and making money for its inventor.
be alive with something
to be covered with or full of something that is moving Don't sit there - the grass is alive with ants.See eat alive, skin alive
eat somebody alive
to criticize someone very angrily If we get our facts wrong we'll be eaten alive by the press.
skin somebody alive
to punish someone very severely Sharon will skin me alive if I'm late.See nearly jump out of skin, save skin
alive and kicking
Also, alive and well. Alive and alert; living and healthy. For example, John's completely recovered; he's alive and kicking, or You're quite mistaken; our lawyer is alive and well. The first expression, sometimes shortened to live and kicking, originally was used by fishmongers hawking their wares to convince customers of their freshness and has been considered a cliché since about 1850. The variant originated in the 1960s as a denial of someone's reported death.
Aware of, conscious of, as in The social worker was alive to all of the mother's worries. [Mid-1700s]
Teeming with, full of, as in After the annual stocking, the pond was alive with trout. [Late 1700s]
Also, come to life.
1. Become vigorous or lively. For example, It took some fast rhythms to make the dancers come alive, or As soon as he mentioned ice cream, the children came to life. The adjective alive has been used in the sense of "vivacious" since the 1700s. Also, the variant originally (late 1600s) meant "to recover from a faint or apparent death." [Colloquial; first half of 1900s]
2. Appear real or believable, as in It's really hard to make this prose come to life. Also see look alive.
eat someone alive
Overwhelm or defeat someone thoroughly, make short work of someone. For example, Lacking experience in manufacturing, he was eaten alive by his competitors. This slangy hyperbole dates from the early 1900s. A newer slangy variant is eat someone's lunch, dating from the mid-1900s. For example, It was a decisive victory; he ate the incumbent's lunch.
Act lively, hurry up, as in Look alive! This job has to be finished today. This phrase, often used as an imperative, today is more common in Britain than in America. [Mid-1800s]
more dead than alive
Exhausted, in poor condition, as in By the time I got off that mountain I was more dead than alive. This idiom may be used either hyperbolically or literally. [c. 1900]
Punish severely, as in If I find the guy who slashed my tire I'll skin him alive. This hyperbolic expression transfers the barbaric practice of flaying a live prisoner to other forms of punishment. [Colloquial mid-1800s]
exclam. Move faster!; Look and act alert! There’s work to be done! Look alive!
See also: look
Aware of; sensitive to: alive to the moods of others.
eat (someone) aliveSlang
To overwhelm or defeat thoroughly: an inexperienced manager who was eaten alive in a competitive corporate environment.
An expression of surprise or pleasure. The phrase most likely arose as an alternative to something stronger, such as “Good lord!” which would have been acceptable to those people who objected to taking the deity's name in vain.