frighten the daylights out of

(redirected from scare the daylights out of)

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 (or scare) the (living) daylights out of

give someone a very severe fright.
This expression was a mid 20th-century development from beat the living daylights out of , on the premise that the effect of extreme fear is as drastic as physical violence.
1955 Frank Yerby The Treasure of Pleasant Valley Didn't mean to hit him…Meant to throw close to him and scare the living daylights out of him.
See also: daylight, frighten, of, out
References in periodicals archive ?
ANGEL: When I was just a timid pre-teen, Scooby-Doo had the ability to scare the daylights out of me.
Hopefully, it's going to scare the daylights out of the Democrats to get out and vote,'' she said.
which annually presents awards to organizations or individuals that use theories with little scientific fact to scare the daylights out of countless Americans and rip off billions of dollars from them.
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