harm

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it wouldn't do (someone) any harm (to do something)

It would or may be good, pragmatic, or beneficial for someone (to do something). You know, it wouldn't do you any harm to comb your hair from time to time. I know that the managers are trying to cut costs, but it wouldn't do them any harm to treat us to a staff lunch every once in a while. Jonathan should try and spend more time with his mother. It wouldn't do him any harm, after all.
See also: any, harm

there is no harm in (someone's) doing (something)

Doing something may be good, pragmatic, or beneficial, and will not cause any problems or harm. The contractor might not be willing to go any lower on the price, but there's no harm in asking. Sure, you might not be accepted for the PhD program, but there's no harm in your trying, is there?
See also: harm, there

it does no harm (for someone) to do (something)

Doing something may be good, pragmatic, or beneficial, and will not cause any problems or harm. The contractor might not be willing to go any lower on the price, but it does no harm to ask. Sure, you might not be accepted for the PhD program, but it does no harm for you to try, does it?
See also: does, harm

come to harm

To encounter an unpleasant situation, often one involving injury or damage. If anyone comes to harm in this operation, you will have to answer to the chief. My car came to harm during the storm when a tree branch fell on it.
See also: come, harm

do more harm than good

To try to help but create more problems in the process. I'm worried that I did more harm than good by applying that tourniquet by myself. I should have just waited for the paramedics to get here.
See also: good, harm, more

harm a hair on (one's) head

To hurt or injure someone. This phrase is often used in the negative. If I find that he harmed a hair on your head, I'll go to his house right now!
See also: hair, harm, head, on

no harm, no foul

If there was no bad outcome to an action, then there's no need to be angry or upset about it. A: "Oh, excuse me! I'm so sorry for knocking over your glass!" B: "It's OK, it was empty. No harm, no foul!"
See also: foul

wouldn't harm a fly

To be particularly shy, diffident, or timid by nature. My brother is a very sweet, warm-hearted man who wouldn't harm a fly. How can you suspect him of committing this crime?
See also: fly, harm

come to harm

to experience something bad; to get damaged or harmed. I sincerely hope that you do not come to harm. I hope no one comes to harm.
See also: come, harm

*in harm's way

Fig. liable to be harmed; subject to potential causes of harm. (*Typically: be ~; get ~; put someone ~.) Soldiers are expected to know what to do when they are in harm's way.
See also: way

No harm done.

It is all right. No one or nothing has been harmed. It's okay. No harm done. A: I am sorry I stepped on your toe. B: No harm done.
See also: done, harm

*out of harm's way

Fig. not liable to be harmed; away from any causes of harm. (*Typically: be ~; get ~; get someone ~.) We should try to get all the civilians out of harm's way.
See also: of, out, way

do someone wrong

Also, do someone damage or harm . Injure someone; be unfaithful or disloyal; act unjustly or unfairly toward someone. For example, John's done me wrong, and I intend to tell him so, or She did him real damage when she started that rumor: The first term dates from the late 1300s; the substitutions of damage and harm are newer. However, while these locutions are still current, a more common modern usage is to turn them into verbal phrases-that is, wrong someone, harm someone, damage someone.
See also: wrong

out of harm's way

In a safe condition or place, as in We fenced the yard to keep the children out of harm's way. This idiom was first recorded about 1661.
See also: of, out, way

wouldn't hurt a fly

or

wouldn't harm a fly

If someone wouldn't hurt a fly or wouldn't harm a fly, they are very kind and gentle. She was such a lovely girl, who wouldn't have hurt a fly. He is, he insists, a pacifist, who would not harm a fly.
See also: fly, hurt

out of harm's way

COMMON If someone or something is out of harm's way, they are in a safe place away from danger or from the possibility of being damaged. For parents, this is an easy way of keeping their children entertained, or simply out of harm's way. Workers scrambled to carry priceless objects out of harm's way.
See also: of, out, way

there's no harm in doing something

COMMON People say there's no harm in doing something to mean that it will not cause problems and may have a good result. They are not always willing to take on untrained workers, but there's no harm in asking. As I see it, there is no harm in cooperating with the police.
See also: harm, something

wouldn't hurt (or harm) a fly

used to emphasize how inoffensive and harmless a person or animal is.
See also: fly, hurt

not harm a hair of someone's head

not cause someone the slightest harm.
See also: hair, harm, head, not, of

out of harm's way

in a safe place.
1996 Frank McCourt Angela's Ashes Take down the Pope and hide him in the coal hole…where he won't be seen and he'll be out of harm's way.
See also: of, out, way

there is no harm in —

the course of action specified may not guarantee success but is at least unlikely to have unwelcome repercussions.
1997 Arundhati Roy The God of Small Things He decided that since she couldn't have a husband there was no harm in her having an education.
See also: harm, there

he, she, etc. wouldn’t harm/hurt a ˈfly

he, she, etc. is kind and gentle, and would not hurt anyone: The dog may look very fierce, but he wouldn’t hurt a fly.
See also: fly, harm, hurt

not harm/touch a hair of somebody’s ˈhead

not hurt somebody physically in any way at all: If he harms a hair of my daughter’s head, I’ll kill him.
See also: hair, harm, head, not, of, touch

ˌno ˈharm done

(spoken) used to tell somebody not to worry because they have caused no serious damage or injury: Forget it, Dave, no harm done.
See also: done, harm

not come to (any) ˈharm

,

come to no ˈharm

not be injured, badly treated or damaged, etc: The child will come to no harm if she stays there.
See also: come, harm, not

out of harm’s ˈway

in a place where somebody/something cannot cause or suffer injury, accident, loss, etc: Most people think that dangerous criminals should be locked up out of harm’s way.You should put these glasses out of harm’s way. They’re too valuable to use every day.
See also: of, out, way

there’s no harm in (somebody’s) doing something

,

it does no harm (for somebody) to do something

used to tell somebody that something is a good idea and will not cause any problems: He may say no, but there’s no harm in asking.It does no harm to ask.
See also: harm, something

mean (somebody) no ˈharm

,

not mean (somebody) any ˈharm

not have any intention of hurting somebody: Try not to worry about what he said. I know you thought he was rude, but he didn’t mean any harm by it.
See also: harm, mean
References in periodicals archive ?
May explains the idea of harm to humanity as follows: "To determine if harm to humanity has occurred, there will have to be one of two (and ideally both) of the following conditions met: either the individual is harmed because of that person's group membership or other non-individualized characteristic, or the harm occurs due to the involvement of a group such as the State" (p.
If Jews or Muslims are being targeted by a genocide, then it is not humanity that is thereby harmed but rather: first, those Jews or Muslims killed or otherwise directly harmed; second, other Jews or Muslims within reach of the perpetrators; and third, possibly, but not necessarily, Jews and Muslims elsewhere in the world.
The person harmed regains some of what has been lost, the person who has done the harm contributes positively and the whole community benefits from greater safety and cohesion.
Yet, as I also noted earlier, if a person is morally liable to be harmed in a certain way, harming him in that way does not count toward making the act that harms him disproportionate.
forth are irreparably harmed, but are they wrongfully harmed?
21) The purpose of the notification duty was to rescue victims of a felony from being harmed by the completion of the felony.
In Virtually Obscene, White masterfully shows that there is little reason to believe that children are harmed (in the descriptive sense of the term) by the availability of sexually explicit material on the Internet.
Berlinger quite deftly addresses the issues at stake at the level of the individual agent, and she attends effectively to the harmed patient's interests and needs.
They are the "second victims," devastated by having been the unwitting instrument that seriously harmed another.
She worked with a human fights organization, Global Exchange, to pressure the us government to set up a fund for Afghan families harmed in Operation Enduring Freedom.
Oblivious to any paternalist implications, the Supreme Court used this idea that black children were being harmed by segregation, and harmed more severely by imposed legal segregation, as a central rationale for abandoning the "separate but equal" doctrine.
A city study, however, found that the toad would not be harmed because it does not live in that stretch of the river.
If an activist stands up in the marketplace and says babies are being harmed, mothers aren't going to read scientific papers to check the claim," points out Bill Patient, former CEO of Ohio-based Geon, a $1.
was harmed by a cognitively impaired individual due to the entity's failure to provide care and services to avoid physical harm, mental anguish or mental illness, this should be considered neglect.
It may help us realize that there is probably harm in most human activities and, in most cases, on both sides of the equation--on the side of the persons harmed by the purported moral offense, but also on the side of the actor whose conduct is restricted by the legal enforcement of morality.