fly off the handle

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fly off the handle

Fig. to lose one's temper. Every time anyone mentions taxes, Mrs. Brown flies off the handle. If she keeps flying off the handle like that, she'll have a heart attack.
See also: fly, handle, off

fly off the handle

to get very angry fly into a rage When we make mistakes, he brings it to our attention, but he doesn't fly off the handle like he used to.
See also: fly, handle, off

fly off the handle

  (informal)
to react in a very angry way to something someone says or does He really flew off the handle when I suggested selling the house.
See also: fly, handle, off

fly off the handle

Lose one's temper, as in Tom flies off the handle at the slightest setback. This metaphoric expression alludes to the loosened head of a hammer flying off after a blow. [Early 1800s]
See also: fly, handle, off

fly off the handle

Informal
To become suddenly enraged: flew off the handle when the train was finally canceled.
See also: fly, handle, off

fly off the handle

To lose one's temper. The image is one of speed, as rapidly as an axe head parting company from the handle during a down stroke. The phrase is credited to the 19th-century humorist Thomas Haliburton.
See also: fly, handle, off
References in classic literature ?
I put up with it as long as I could and then joined in and tried to improve it, but this encouraged young George to join in too, and that made a failure of it; because George's voice was just "turning," and when he was singing a dismal sort of bass it was apt to fly off the handle and startle everybody with a most discordant cackle on the upper notes.
And yet if his wife and I talked together or there seemed any sympathy between us, a kind of wave of jealousy would pass over him, and he would be off the handle and saying the wildest things in a moment.
The blood trickling on the floor off the handle of the knife had turned it into an extremely plain case of murder.
The housemaid found fault with the color of the paint, made him take off the handles, which, she said, reminded her of a coffin, complained that a lock with such a small key couldn't be strong enough for a large box, but admitted that it was all her own fault for not employing a proper man.
If she'd stopped for one second before flying off the handle, she'd realise it doesn't mean you're still seeing your ex, it means you had a past before you met her.
Meanwhile, Sheila costs Naomi her new job by overselling her to Kathy, so Naomi flies off the handle again at her mother.
According to sources, the tragedy struck after a frustrated Wali flew off the handle during a domestic spat and opened fire on the women killing four and wounding two more.
Bill says "I am not sure if the 'flying off the handle when you are full of bologna, expression is still used these days, or if it is just something remembered by some of the old timers.
The TV presenter flew off the handle when Rebecca reminded him cook Kian Egan wanted to keep the fire low so dinner didn't get burnt.
29 (ANI): Manchester City's star striker Mario Balotelli flew off the handle after receiving a red card in Sunday's 1-1 draw at Liverpool.
As usual, she flies off the handle completely and tells him there's no chance she'll marry him now, but after visiting Owen herself, soon changes her tune.
Sarwan was caught out by Tim Bresnan in the gully for 100 when a short delivery looped off the handle of his bat.
When she knocks him back, he flies off the handle and insults Katie - who fires him.
My partner is always flying off the handle at the simplest of things.