under someone's thumb


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to under someone's thumb: all thumbs, without a hitch

under someone's thumb

Controlled or dominated by someone, as in He's been under his mother's thumb for years. The allusion in this metaphoric idiom is unclear, that is, why a thumb rather than a fist or some other anatomic part should symbolize control. [Mid-1700s]
See also: thumb
Full browser ?