Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
have seen (one's) day
To be beyond one's prime; to be no longer useful, effective, or functional. The one-time champion seems to have seen his day, having been knocked out of the qualifying round for the fifth year in a row. The VHS, the once-dominant form of home movie entertainment, has by now truly seen its day.
Now I've seen everything!
I can't imagine seeing anything as amazing, unexpected, strange, or unbelievable as this! (Usually used hyperbolically.) Democrats and Republicans agreeing on a tax reform law? Now I've seen everything! I just saw the intern totally reduce the boss to tears in a shouting match—now I've seen everything!
in a bad light
Negatively; under unfavorable circumstances. (Typically used with the verbs "see" or "show," or some similar variation.) I'm flattered that he based a character in his novel on me, but I think I was shown in a bad light. The once-beloved mayor has been seen in a bad light ever since news of his tax-evasion scandal came to public attention.
see (the) red mist
To fall into a state of extreme anger, excitement, or competitive arousal, such as might cloud one's judgment or senses. Primarily heard in UK. Their striker isn't the most consistent player on the pitch, but once he sees red mist, you had better get out of his way. I'm not sure what happened. I was at the pub having a pint, and then someone insulted me, and I guess I must have seen red mist because, the next thing I knew, I was being dragged away with bloodied knuckles.
remain to be seen
To not yet be clear, certain, or known. We can see for ourselves the disaster's immediate impact, but the long-term environmental effects remain to be seen. Of course, it remains to be seen whether the president's popularity on other issues will carry over into this more controversial endeavor.
what has been seen cannot be unseen
Disturbing or upsetting images are not easily forgotten. Even though I'm back from the battlefield now, what has been seen cannot be unseen.
children should be seen and not heard
Prov. Children should not speak in the presence of adults. (Often used as a way to rebuke a child who has spoken when he or she should not.) You may come out and meet the party guests if you'll remember that children should be seen and not heard.
have seen better days
Euph. to be in bad condition. My old car has seen better days, but at least it's still running. She's seen better days, it's true, but she's still lots of fun.
Haven't I seen you somewhere before?and Haven't we met before?
a polite or coy way of trying to introduce yourself to someone. Bob: Hi. Haven't I seen you somewhere before? Mary: I hardly think so. Bill (moving toward Jane): Haven't we met before? Jane (moving away from Bill): No way!
(I) haven't seen you in a long time.
Fig. an expression of greeting, often said as part of a series. Mary: Hi, Fred! Haven't seen you in a long time. Fred: Yeah. Longtime no see. Tom: Well, John. Is that you? I haven't seen you in a long time. John: Good to see you, Tom!
(I) haven't seen you in a month of Sundays.
Rur. I haven't seen you in a long time. Tom: Hi, Bill Haven't seen you in a month of Sundays! Bill: Hi, Tom. Long time no see. Bob: Well, Fred! Come right in! Haven't seen you in a month of Sundays! Fred: Good to see you, Uncle Bob.
(I've) seen better.
a noncommittal and not very positive judgment about something or someone. Alice: How did you like the movie? John: I've seen better. Bill: What do you think about this weather? Bob: Seen better.
I've seen better heads on nickel beers.
Rur. This person is stupid. Jim's good-looking, but I've seen better heads on nickel beers. My students this term aren't what you'd call bright. I've seen better heads on nickel beers.
(I've) seen worse.
a noncommittal and not totally negative judgment about something or someone. Alice: How did you like the movie? John: I've seen worse. Bill: What do you think about this weather? Gladys: Seen worse.
They must have seen you coming.
You were really cheated. They saw you coming and decided they could cheat you easily. Andy: It cost two hundred dollars. Rachel: You paid two hundred dollars for that thing? Boy, they must have seen you coming. Bob: Do you think I paid too much for this car? It's not as good as I thought it was. Tom: It's almost a wreck. They must have seen you coming.
would not be seen dead (doing something)and would not be caught dead (doing something)
would not do something under any circumstances. I wouldn't be seen dead going out with Bruno! Martha would not be caught dead going into a place like that.
You ain't seen nothing yet!
Rur. The best, most exciting, or cleverest part is yet to come! (The use of ain't is a fixed part of this idiomatic expression.) Alice: Well, the first act was simply divine. Sue: Stick around. You ain'tseen nothing yet! Mary: This part of the city is really beautiful. Bill: You ain't seen nothing yet!
have seen better days
something is in bad condition because of heavy use The airport building had seen better days and needed a lot of repairs.
it remains to be seen
it is still unclear It remains to be seen whether the heating system is really fixed or will have to be replaced.
have to be seen to be believedalso must be seen to be believed
so extreme that it is difficult to accept Our spacious new offices have to be seen to be believed!
Children should be seen and not heard.
something that you say which means that children should be quiet I can't stand all that shouting. Children should be seen and not heard, in my opinion.
have heard/seen the last of somebody/something
if you have heard the last of someone or something unpleasant, they will not cause you any more problems in the future (often negative) It's a worrying problem and I dare say we haven't heard the last of it. He's a very unpleasant man. I sincerely hope we've seen the last of him.
haven't seen hide nor hair of somebody/something(informal)
if you have not seen hide nor hair of someone or something, you have not seen them for a period of time (often + since ) I haven't seen hide nor hair of her since last Sunday, and I'm beginning to get rather worried.
have seen better days(humorous)
if something or someone has seen better days, they are not in such a good condition as they used to be Our washing machine has seen better days. We were met at the hotel entrance by an ageing porter who had evidently seen better days.
have to be seen to be believed
if something has to be seen to be believed, it is so surprising or shocking that it is difficult to believe The devastation had to be seen to be believed.See wouldn't be caught dead, have heard the last of
caught dead, wouldn't be
Also, wouldn't be seen dead. Would have nothing to do with, detest, as in I wouldn't be caught dead in that outfit, or He'd not be seen dead drinking a cheap wine. This hyperbole is always put negatively. [Colloquial; first half of 1900s]
See also: caught
seen better days, have
Be worn out, have fallen into a state of decline, as in This chair has seen better days, or The family business has seen better days. This term was first used by Shakespeare to describe a decline of fortune ( Timon of Athens, 4:2) but soon was broadened to describe aging or deterioration in both humans and objects.
seen one, seen them all
One example suffices, as in I'm afraid I don't care for home movies-seen one, seen them all. This world-weary expression was first recorded in 1811. A newer idiom expressing a very similar view is been there, done that, indicating that it is boring to repeat an experience once it has lost its novelty. For example, No, I don't want to climb Mount Washington; been there, done that. This idiom was first recorded in Australia in 1983 and was popularized in America in the 1990s through a widely aired commercial for a soft drink.
seen better days
tv. showing signs of wear or exhaustion. (Always a past participle.) This coat has seen better days.
would not be seen dead
phr. would not do something under any circumstances. I wouldn’t be seen dead going out with Spike!