grim

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Related to grimness: Reemerge, take advantage, misattributed

hang on like grim death

To clutch something very tightly, usually to avoid falling. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. After the ladder tipped over, I hung on like grim death so that I didn't fall off the roof.
See also: death, grim, hang, like, on

paint a (some kind of) picture of (something)

To give an elaborate or detailed description of something that portrays it in a specific way. The board meeting painted a pretty grim picture of the company's future. Jonathan always paints an idyllic picture of our childhood, glossing over the bad memories of our father.
See also: kind, of, paint, picture

Grim Reaper

Death, as personified by a cloaked man or skeleton carrying a scythe. She's been in three really terrible car accidents but has miraculously avoided the Grim Reaper.
See also: grim, reaper

hang on to (someone or something) like grim death

To clutch someone or something very tightly, usually to avoid falling. After the ladder tipped over, I hung on to the roof like grim death so that I didn't fall.
See also: death, grim, hang, like, on

hold on to (someone or something) like grim death

To clutch someone or something very tightly, usually to avoid falling. After the ladder tipped over, I held on to the roof like grim death so that I didn't fall.
See also: death, grim, hold, like, on

like grim death

With a very tight, intense, and determined grip. After the ladder tipped over, I hung onto the edge of the roof like grim death. Even on the sheerest of cliff faces, there are still small animals and bits of vegetation clung like grim death.
See also: death, grim, like

grim reaper

Fig. death. I think I have a few years to go yet before the grim reaper pays me a call.
See also: grim, reaper

like grim death

mainly BRITISH
If you hold onto something like grim death, you hold onto it very tightly. I clung to the chain like grim death.
See also: death, grim, like

the Grim Reaper

The Grim Reaper is an imaginary character who represents death. He looks like a skeleton, wears a long, black cloak with a hood, and carries a scythe (= tool for cutting grass). By giving away assets while still alive, inheritance tax can be avoided entirely by the time the Grim Reaper calls. They were sitting around, waiting for the Grim Reaper.
See also: grim, reaper

like (or for) grim death

with intense determination.
1989 Jonathan Gash Jade Woman Here and there a greenish scumble of vegetation hung on for grim death.
See also: death, grim, like

the Grim Reaper

a personification of death in the form of a cloaked skeleton wielding a large scythe.
See also: grim, reaper

hang on/hold on (to somebody/something) like grim ˈdeath

hold somebody/something very tightly, usually because you are afraid or determined not to let go: As the horse galloped off, you could see poor Sarah hanging on like grim death.The robbers tried to steal my bag, but I held on to it like grim death.
The word grim (= very serious or unpleasant) is often used to describe death.
See also: death, grim, hang, hold, like, on
References in periodicals archive ?
Clinton's gleam and charm must have helped her much to ease the army generals' built-in grimness and toughness.
Wade said it was a strange feeling for him and at first he didn't realize the grimness of the problem.
The prevailing economic grimness reported in the news every day reminds me of the recession of the early 80s; more than the recession of the early 90s.
Her time in power coincided with my formative years and I remember the Tory Government being a time of pretty much unremitting grimness for people in the North East.
So there is a romantic element that helps lighten the grimness of Peter's situation, but which ultimately adds immeasurably to the inherent poetry of his dreams and the thought-stream that is with him night and day and which leads to the catharsis that for the reader makes his suffering ultimately life affirming.
The potential grimness of the subject matter, however, is leavened by Zieroth's injections of wry humour and what the publisher calls an "absurdist twist.
Compare this to the grimness of the Johns Smith's Cup Saturday, when it is difficult even to get to a Tote booth after the third race because of the need to dodge around prostrate bodies of drunken dimwits.
It follows the hotel-to-hotel nomadism of a wide-eyed girl whose innocent misun-derstandings of adult situations create humor in the midst of grimness.
SO YOU don't fancy the special effects in Harry Potter, or the Hollywood cheese in The Proposal, or even the grimness of Antichrist.
Jaunty brass-band score by Julius Hjort goes far in setting the slightly irreverent tone and helps defuse some of the story's grimness.
As the grimness of post-RWC euphoria sets in, scepticism mounts in SA over the new coach and his new team.
Bollenback's approach to standards is particularly interesting; an unusually edgy exposition of the theme on "How Deep Is the Ocean" is followed by a solo that treats the melody with a certain amount of tight-lipped intensity-- there is a grimness to Bollenback's swing here that is quite effective.
But it can also be a place of gore, grief and grimness of every type imaginable.
They are humorous yet carry the dreaded underbelly of reality: the grimness of being duty bound, or needing that paycheck, or having to hold one's tongue and appear amenable to one's boss.
His passionate admiration for Athenian democracy enlivens the chapter on the birth of that institution in 508 BC, and leaves no doubt about the contrasting grimness of life in Sparta and the despotism of the Persian kings or of an emperor such as Nero.