eyebrow


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knit (one's) eyebrows

To furrow one's brow, often due to worry or confusion. When I asked Bill about what happened, and he knit his eyebrows, I knew I was about to hear some bad news.
See also: eyebrow, knit

raise an eyebrow

To show confusion, surprise, concern, or disapproval, either literally (often by actually raising an eyebrow) or figuratively. When I told my mom how much money we would need, she raised an eyebrow and asked me to add it up again. You need to stop coming in late every day—the boss is starting to raise an eyebrow. My grandmother definitely raised an eyebrow when I stopped going to church.
See also: eyebrow, raise

cause (some) eyebrows to raise and cause some raised eyebrows

Fig. to shock people; to surprise and dismay people. (The same as raise some eyebrows.) John caused eyebrows to raise when he married a woman half his age. If you want to cause some eyebrows to raise, just start singing as you walk down the street.
See also: and, cause, eyebrow, raise, raised

down to a gnat 's eyebrow

Fig. down to the smallest detail. He described what the thief was wearing down to a gnat's eyebrow. No use trying to sneak anything out of the refrigerator. Mom knows what's in there, down to a gnat's eyebrow.
See also: down, eyebrow, gnat

hang on

 
1. to wait awhile. Hang on a minute. I need to talk to you. Hang on. Let me catch up with you.
2. to survive for awhile. I think we can hang on without electricity for a little while longer.
3. [for an illness] to linger or persist. This cold has been hanging on for a month. This is the kind of flu that hangs on for weeks.
4. be prepared for fast or rough movement. (Usually a command.) Hang on! The train is going very fast. Hang on! We're going to crash!
5. to pause in a telephone conversation. Please hang on until I get a pen. If you'll hang on, I'll get her.
See also: hang, on

hang on

(someone's) every word Cliché to listen closely or with awe to what someone says. I am hanging on your every word. Please go on. The audience hung on her every word throughout the speech.
See also: hang, on

hang on

 (to someone or something) and hold on (to someone or something)
1. Lit. to grasp someone or something. She hung on to her husband to keep warm. She sat there and hung on, trying to keep warm.
2. Fig. to detain someone or something. Please hang on to Tom if he's still there. I need to talk to him.
See also: hang, on

hang something on someone

Sl. to blame something on someone; to frame someone for something. (See also hang something on someone or something.) Don't try to hang the blame on me! The sheriff tried to hang the bank robbery on Jed.
See also: hang, on

hang something on someone or something

to drape or hook something on someone or something. (See also .) Hangthissign on Walter and see how he looks. Please hang this sign on the front door.
See also: hang, on

raise some eyebrows

 and raise a few eyebrows
Fig. to shock or surprise people mildly (by doing or saying something). (Some can be replaced with a few, someone's, a lot of, etc.) What you just said may raise some eyebrows, but it shouldn't make anyone really angry. John's sudden marriage to Ann raised a few eyebrows.
See also: eyebrow, raise

raise (some) eyebrows

also raise a few eyebrows
to cause disapproval or worry The styles now favored by many teenagers have raised a few eyebrows among parents.
See also: eyebrow, raise

hang on

1. to hold on tightly Firefighters used to hang on to the back of the fire truck as it raced to a fire.
2. to wait Excuse me, wait a minute! Verna, can you hang on just a second? I'll be right back.
Usage notes: often used when you are talking on the telephone
3. to continue despite appearing as if the end is near That awful show has hung on for yet another year, although we can't imagine why or how.
See also: hang, on

raise (a few) eyebrows

to shock or surprise people Anna's miniskirt raised eyebrows at the board meeting. The player's huge transfer fee raised a few eyebrows in the football world.
See also: eyebrow, raise

cause raised eyebrows

Also, raise eyebrows. Cause surprise or disapproval, as in At school his purple hair usually causes raised eyebrows. This transfer of a physical act (raising one's eyebrows) to the feelings it may express took place in the early 1900s. Lytton Strachey used the term in The Eminent Victorians (1918): "The most steady-going churchman hardly raises an eyebrow at it now."
See also: cause, eyebrow, raised

hang on

1. hang on to. Cling tightly to something, retain, as in Hang on to those papers before they blow away. [Mid-1800s] Also see hang on to your hat.
2. Continue persistently, persevere, as in This cough is hanging on much longer than I expected, or He was hanging on, hoping business would improve when interest rates went down. This usage was sometimes embellished to hang on by one's eyelashes or eyebrows or eyelids , meaning "to persist at any cost." [Second half of 1800s]
3. Keep a telephone connection open, as in Please hang on, I'll see if he's in. [First half of 1900s]
4. Wait for a short time, be patient, as in Hang on, I'm getting it as fast as I can. [First half of 1900s]
5. Depend on, as in Our plans hang on their decision about the new park. [Colloquial; second half of 1900s]
6. Blame on, as in They'll try to hang that robbery on the same gang, but I don't think they'll succeed. [Colloquial; first half of 1900s]
7. hang one on. Get very drunk, as in Come on, let's go and hang one on. [Slang; mid-1900s] Also see the subsequent idioms beginning with hang on.
See also: hang, on

hang on

v.
1. To affix or mount something to some place or fixture that holds it and prevents it from falling: Please hang your hats on the hooks of the coat rack. I hung the picture on the wall.
2. To cling tightly to something: The cat hung on to the draperies until I was able to get it down.
3. To wait for a short period of time: Hang on, would you? I'll be there in a moment.
4. To continue persistently; persevere: The family is hanging on despite financial problems.
5. To depend on something or someone for an outcome: My whole future could hang on the results of this test.
6. To blame something on someone, especially unfairly: We lost the game, but you can't hang that on me.
See also: hang, on

raise eyebrows

To cause surprise or mild disapproval.
See also: eyebrow, raise
References in classic literature ?
Having at last succeeded in removing the eyebrows, Magdalen was free to combat the unfortunate impression produced on her companion's mind by every weapon of persuasion which her ingenuity could employ.
At this second interchange of the Christian name, Madame Defarge, still using her toothpick with profound composure, coughed another grain of cough, and raised her eyebrows by the breadth of another line.
This third interchange of the Christian name was completed at the moment when Madame Defarge put her toothpick by, kept her eyebrows up, and slightly rustled in her seat.
His hair was quite white now, though his eyebrows were still black.
Then, for one instant turning on Otto his drooping, delicate features, and the wintry hair that seemed to drip over his eyebrows like icicles, he added: `You see, I am dead, too.
With shifting eyes but eyebrows still raised, Telyanin handed him the purse.
They were passing a brilliantly-lit corner, and the light flashed upon his strong, set face with its heavy eyebrows and firm lips.
She raised her eyebrows and lifted her hands, in playful remonstrance.
Rolland's bushy eyebrows frowned in stern disapproval of the new topic of conversation.
Her eyebrows were full, even, and arched beyond the power of art to imitate.
When that gentleman came from the City, and was welcomed in the drawing-room by his daughters and the elegant Miss Wirt, they saw at once by his face--which was puffy, solemn, and yellow at the best of times--and by the scowl and twitching of his black eyebrows, that the heart within his large white waistcoat was disturbed and uneasy.
Chairs were set with the aid of footmen, moving almost imperceptibly about the room; the party settled itself, divided into two groups: one round the samovar near the hostess, the other at the opposite end of the drawing room, round the handsome wife of an ambassador, in black velvet, with sharply defined black eyebrows.
She looked at him with a faint smile and raised eyebrows.
The Chief Inspector raised scornful eyebrows dispassionately.
The emphasis was helped by the speaker's square wall of a forehead, which had his eyebrows for its base, while his eyes found commodious cellarage in two dark caves, overshadowed by the wall.