by the dozens

by the dozens

Fig. many; by some fairly large, indefinite number. (Similar to but implying less than hundreds. Compare this with by the dozen.) Just then people began showing up by the dozens. I baked cookies and pies by the dozens for the charity bake sale.
See also: dozen
References in classic literature ?
In the midst of them, the hangman, ever busy and ever worse than useless, was in constant requisition; now, stringing up long rows of miscellaneous criminals; now, hanging a housebreaker on Saturday who had been taken on Tuesday; now, burning people in the hand at Newgate by the dozen, and now burning pamphlets at the door of Westminster Hall; to-day, taking the life of an atrocious murderer, and to-morrow of a wretched pilferer who had robbed a farmer's boy of sixpence.