frighten

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frightened of (one's) (own) shadow

Easily or constantly spooked, nervous, timid, afraid, or fearfully suspicious. I can't say I have much faith in Johnny helping us on this expedition—that boy's frightened of his own shadow! You can't live life frightened of your shadow—you need to get out into the world and taste adventure!
See also: frighten, of, shadow

frighten the (living) daylights out of (someone)

To shock or frighten someone very suddenly and/or severely. Don't sneak up on me like that; you frightened the living daylights out of me!
See also: daylight, frighten, of, out

frighten the shit out of (someone)

vulgar To shock or frighten someone very suddenly and/or severely. (Hyperbolically alludes to frightening someone so badly as to cause him or her to lose bowel control.) Don't sneak up on me like that, you frightened the shit out of me! That car accident seems to have frightened the shit out of Janet—she's still shaken by it.
See also: frighten, of, out, shit

frighten the life out of someone

To shock or frighten someone very suddenly and/or severely. (Hyperbolically alludes to frightening someone so severely as to cause them to die.) Don't sneak up on me like that, you frightened the life out of me! That car accident seems to have frightened the life out of Janet—she's still shaken by it.
See also: frighten, life, of, out

frighten one out of one's wits

 and scare one out of one's wits; frighten someone out of a year's growth; scare someone out of a year's growth; frighten one out of one's mind; scare one out of one's mind
Fig. to frighten one very badly. Oh! That loud noise scared me out of my wits. I'll give him a good scolding and frighten him out of his wits. Oh, you frightened me out of a year's growth! You frightened Bob out of his mind.
See also: frighten, of, one, out, wit

frighten (someone or an animal) into doing something

to threaten someone or an animal into doing something. You can't frighten me into leaving! Let's try to frighten the coyotes into running away.
See also: doing, frighten

frighten someone (or an animal) into something

 and frighten someone or an animal in 
1. to scare someone or an animal into entering something or some place. The trouble in the neighborhood frightened most of the residents into their houses. The mouse was out of its hole, but we came in and frightened the little mouse back in.
2. to scare someone or an animal into a particular state. They frightened me into a quivering mass. The mouse was frightened into a state of confusion.
See also: frighten

frighten (someone or an animal) to death

 and scare someone or an animal to death
1. Lit. to frighten a living creature badly enough to cause death. The roar of the plane engine seems to have frightened the little dog to death.
2. Fig. to frighten someone severely. The dentist always frightens me to death. She scared me to death when she screamed.
See also: death, frighten

frighten someone or something away

 and frighten someone or something off
to scare someone or something off. The noise frightened the burglar away. Something frightened away the prowlers. The high prices frightened the shoppers off.
See also: away, frighten

frighten the hell out of someone

 and frighten the pants off someone; frighten the living daylights out of someone; scare the living daylights out of someone; scare the shit out of someone; scare the wits out of someone
to frighten someone badly, suddenly or both. (Use of hell and shit are crude.) These figures frighten the hell out of me. The door blew shut and scared the shit out of me. It takes a lot to scare the pants off a hardened criminal.
See also: frighten, hell, of, out

frightened to death

 and scared to death 
1. Lit. frightened to the point of dying. This poor animal has been frightened to death by the attacking dogs.
2. Fig. frightened or anxious. I don't want to go to the dentist today. I'm frightened to death. I'm frightened to death of spiders.
See also: death, frighten

You scared the hell out of me.

 and You scared the crap out of me.; You scared the dickens out of me.; You scared the devil out of me.; You scared me out of my wits.; You scared the pants off (of) me.
You frightened me very badly. (Also with subjects other than second person. Of is usually retained before pronouns.) He scared the hell out of all of us. She really scared the pants off of me.
See also: hell, of, out, scare

frighten somebody out of their wits

also scare somebody out of their wits
to cause extreme fear in someone Don't sneak up behind me like that – you frightened me out of my wits!
See also: frighten, of, out, wit

frighten/scare the (living) daylights out of somebody

to frighten someone very much Don't come up behind me like that. You scared the living daylights out of me!
See also: daylight, frighten, of, out

frighten/scare somebody to death

to make someone feel very frightened David suddenly appeared in the doorway and scared me to death.
See also: death, frighten

frighten/scare the hell out of somebody

  (informal)
to make someone feel very frightened He drives like a madman - frightens the hell out of me.
See also: frighten, hell, of, out

frighten/scare the life out of somebody

to make someone feel very frightened She frightened the life out of me, shouting like that.
See also: frighten, life, of, out

frighten/scare somebody out of their wits

to make someone very frightened Don't shout like that - you scared me out of my wits!
See also: frighten, of, out, wit

scare out of one's wits

Also, frighten out of one's wits; scare stiff or silly or to death or the living daylights out of or the pants off . Terrify, make one panic, as in When the lights went out, she was scared out of her wits, or I was scared stiff that I would fail the driver's test. The first of these hyperbolic terms, scare out of one's wits, is the oldest and, like silly, suggests one is frightened enough to lose one's mind. The verb scare dates from about 1200, and out of one's wits was first recorded in William Tyndale's translation of the Bible in 1526 (I Corinthians 14:23): "Will they not say that ye are out of your wits?" They were first put together in 1697, the same period from which came scare out of one's seven senses, a usage now obsolete. The variant using daylights, which sometimes occurs without living, dates from the 1950s. Daylights at one time referred to the eyes but here means "vital organs." Frighten to death was first recorded in Charles Dickens's Barnaby Rudge (1840) and scare to death probably appeared about the same time. However, to death used as an intensifier dates from the 1500s. These terms allude to the fact that a sudden fright can precipitate cardiac arrest. Scare stiff, first recorded in 1905, alludes to the temporary paralysis that can accompany intense fear. For the last variant, see also under pants off.
See also: of, out, scare, wit

frighten away

or frighten off
v.
To cause someone or something to leave or to stay away due to fear: The sound of my shotgun frightened the crows away. The alarm frightened away the burglar. The big dog frightens off unwanted guests. The scary-looking house frightened neighborhood children off.
See also: away, frighten
References in classic literature ?
I was so quiet, and so obedient, and so easily frightened.
Innocent as I had been of any intention to terrify and agitate her, my heart smote me as I looked at the poor, pale, frightened face.
You couldn't help it, I know but I wish it was me you had frightened, and not her.
Yes, sir,' she rejoined, trembling and frightened as she was.
All was very quiet, and she went on again--not absolutely frightened, but a little quicker than before perhaps, and possibly not quite so much at her ease, for a check of that kind is startling.
She was really frightened now, and was yet hesitating what to do, when the bushes crackled and snapped, and a man came plunging through them, close before her.
When the two poor frightened men had secured their wives and goods, they sent the other slave they had of the three who came with the women, and who was at their place by accident, away to the Spaniards with all speed, to give them the alarm, and desire speedy help, and, in the meantime, they took their arms and what ammunition they had, and retreated towards the place in the wood where their wives were sent; keeping at a distance, yet so that they might see, if possible, which way the savages took.
But the first was too good a marksman to miss his aim; for as the savages kept near one another, a little behind in a line, he fired, and hit two of them directly; the foremost was killed outright, being shot in the head; the second, which was the runaway Indian, was shot through the body, and fell, but was not quite dead; and the third had a little scratch in the shoulder, perhaps by the same ball that went through the body of the second; and being dreadfully frightened, though not so much hurt, sat down upon the ground, screaming and yelling in a hideous manner.
The five that were behind, more frightened with the noise than sensible of the danger, stood still at first; for the woods made the sound a thousand times bigger than it really was, the echoes rattling from one side to another, and the fowls rising from all parts, screaming, and every sort making a different noise, according to their kind; just as it was when I fired the first gun that perhaps was ever shot off in the island.
Our two men, as they confessed to me, were grieved to be obliged to kill so many poor creatures, who had no notion of their danger; yet, having them all thus in their power, and the first having loaded his piece again, resolved to let fly both together among them; and singling out, by agreement, which to aim at, they shot together, and killed, or very much wounded, four of them; the fifth, frightened even to death, though not hurt, fell with the rest; so that our men, seeing them all fall together, thought they had killed them all.
SUPERSTAR singer Adele has confessed she's frightened by fame after the death of tragic Amy Winehouse.
T I own a very friendly dog, but when groups of children gather round him making lots of noise when we are out walking he becomes frightened and distressed.
She has installed a security chain and put up a sign in her door for people not to knock without an appointment because she is frightened.
A CHARITY cycle featurY -ing a member of band Frightened Rabbit passed through Newcastle.
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