bristle

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Related to bristled: jointed

bristle at something

Fig. to show sudden anger or other negative response to something. (Alludes to a dog or cat raising the hair on its back in anger or as a threat.) She bristled at the suggestion. I knew Lily would bristle at the appearance of Max.
See also: bristle

bristle with rage

 and bristle with anger; bristle with indignation
Fig. to demonstrate one's anger, rage, or displeasure with a strong negative response. (Alludes to a dog or cat raising the hair on its back in anger or as a threat.) She was just bristling with anger. I don't know what set her off. Walter bristled with rage as he saw the damage to his new car.
See also: bristle, rage
References in classic literature ?
Long spears bristled from the rude battle-ships, as they slid noiselessly over the bosom of the water, propelled by giant muscles rolling beneath glistening, ebony hides.
He had therefore bristled up at Boxtel's hatred, whom he had suspected to be a warm friend of the prisoner, making trifling inquiries to contrive with the more certainty some means of escape for him.
So sudden and formidable was her appearance that the boar involuntarily bunched himself together on the defensive and bristled as she swerved toward him.
He regained his feet, absurdly bristled the hair on his shoulders and absurdly growled his high disdain of these lesser, two-legged things that came and went and obeyed the wills of great, white-skinned, two-legged gods such as Skipper and Mister Haggin.
Michael bristled, but permitted the first timid step.
This was her day--and it came not often--when manes bristled, and fang smote fang or ripped and tore the yielding flesh, all for the possession of her.
The Ass, thinking that they bowed their heads in token of respect for himself, bristled up with pride, gave himself airs, and refused to move another step.
Here and there savage dogs rushed upon him, but he bristled his neck-hair and snarled (for he was learning fast), and they let him go his way unmolested.
The emphasis was helped by the speaker's hair, which bristled on the skirts of his bald head, a plantation of firs to keep the wind from its shining surface, all covered with knobs, like the crust of a plum pie, as if the head had scarcely warehouse-room for the hard facts stored inside.