on the block

(redirected from put one's head on the block)

on the block

For sale, especially at an auction. After years of collecting them, all her records had to be put on the block to cover the cost of her husband's debt.
See also: block, on

on the block

 
1. Lit. on a city or suburban block. John is the biggest kid on the block. We had a party on the block last weekend.
2. on sale at auction; on the auction block. We couldn't afford to keep up the house, so it was put on the block to pay the taxes. That's the finest painting I've ever seen on the block.
See also: block, on

on the block

1. put or go on the block . Offer for sale, as in These paintings will all be put on the block. This usage alludes to the auction block, the platform from which the auctioneer sells, so called since the mid-1800s.
2. put one's head on the block. Take a great risk, make oneself vulnerable, as in I'm not going to put my head on the block just to save her reputation. This usage alludes to the executioner's block, on which victims are beheaded, so called since the mid-1500s.
See also: block, on

on the block

AMERICAN
COMMON If something is on the block, it is offered for sale, sometimes at an auction. Two Basquiat paintings were on the block on Tuesday, May 5. Note: You can also put something on the block. Last week, after months of rumors, the company officially put itself on the block. The team's money worries had forced them to put the club on the block. Note: The usual British expression is under the hammer.
See also: block, on

on the block

for sale at auction. chiefly North American
The block in this phrase was the platform on which, in former times, a slave stood to be auctioned.
See also: block, on
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