set one's teeth on edge

set one's teeth on edge

Irritate, annoy, make one cringe, as in That raucous laugh sets my teeth on edge. This expression alludes to the shuddering feeling evoked by a grating noise or similar irritation. It appears in several books of the Bible and was also used by Shakespeare. [c. 1600]
See also: edge, on, set, teeth
References in classic literature ?
All around it looked so cold and raw: the long willow-leaves were quite yellow, and the fog dripped from them like water; one leaf fell after the other: the sloes only stood full of fruit, which set one's teeth on edge.
But after a while, the regimented way in which the cables were distributed became oppressive, and their fineness started to set one's teeth on edge, as if they were made from glinting piano wire.