clip (one's) wings

(redirected from clip his wings)

clip (one's) wings

To restrict one's freedom, power, or full potential. A reference to the practice of clipping a bird's wings to prevent it from flying. The kids need to be able to explore the world around them—don't clip their wings. The boss is always trying to clip my wings and micro-manage me.
See also: clip, wing

clip someone's wings

Fig. to restrain someone; to reduce or put an end to someone's privileges. (Alludes to clipping a bird's wings to keep it from flying away.) You had better learn to get home on time, or I will clip your wings. My mother clipped my wings. I can't go out tonight.
See also: clip, wing

clip someone's wings

Restrain or reduce someone's freedom, as in Hiding his car keys-you're really clipping his wings. This metaphor for clipping a bird's wings to prevent its flying away dates from ancient Roman times. Christopher Marlowe used it in The Massacre at Paris (1590): "Away to prison with him, I'll clip his wings."
See also: clip, wing

clip someone's wings

COMMON If someone clips your wings, they limit your freedom to do what you want. Since then, these companies have become big business, with no government having the courage to clip their wings. Congress tried to clip his wings and cancel his referendum. Note: People sometimes clip the wings of birds to prevent them from flying away.
See also: clip, wing

clip someone's wings

prevent someone from acting freely.
Clip someone's wings comes from the phrase clip a bird's wings , which means ‘trim the feathers of a bird so that it cannot fly’.
See also: clip, wing

clip somebody’s ˈwings

limit somebody’s freedom or power: The new law was seen as an attempt to clip the wings of the trade unions.
This refers to cutting some of the feathers from a bird’s wings so that it can no longer fly.
See also: clip, wing
References in classic literature ?
They pluck his feathers now and then and clip his wings, but he sings, he sings
But chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has had his share of differences with Khan and has tried to clip his wings on a number of occasions.
Should I clip his wings to let him out of his cage?
Lib Dem culture spokesman Don Foster said: "If Ross can't show he understands his responsibility, it may be time to clip his wings.
Mr Mandelson defeated a French attempt last week to clip his wings and stop him bartering substantial EU agriculture support as part of market-opening concessions to the developing world.
Beckham now seems to have become an industry in his own right, but Fergie had to clip his wings by putting him on the bench for the Champions League quarter final with Real Madrid.
I only hope that it doesn't mean the Government has told him that there are options he is not allowed to put forward for debate and tried to clip his wings.
A secret plot is being hatched by 50 Labour MPs to clip his wings as Premier.
Now the authorities have acted, it should clip his wings for a while.
The powerful Labour-dominated Treasury Select Committee claimed he was empire building and urged Tony Blair to clip his wings.