Cain


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

raise Cain

To cause or get into trouble; to engage in unrestrained and excessively disruptive behavior. (A reference to the biblical figure Cain, the first son of Adam and Eve, who killed his brother Abel and was cursed by God.) I started raising Cain as soon as I was in college and could do what I wanted, but I mellowed out after I graduated. The customer has been raising Cain about the service charge we included on his bill.
See also: Cain, raise

the mark of Cain

An association of disgrace or public disapproval over some crime, wrongdoing, personal failing, or controversial action. An allusion to the Biblical figure Cain, the eldest of Adam and Eve's sons, who murdered his brother Abel out of jealousy and was then cursed by God. I wonder is it appropriate that she still bear the mark of Cain for something she did when she was but a teenager. The judge argued that issuing a lengthier sentence would have been a mark of Cain on an otherwise upstanding and motivated student.
See also: Cain, mark, of

raise Cain

to make a lot of trouble; to raise hell. (A Biblical reference, from Genesis 4.) Fred was really raising Cain about the whole matter. Let's stop raising Cain.
See also: Cain, raise

raise Cain

Also, raise hell or the devil . Behave in a rowdy or disruptive way, as in He said he'd raise Cain if they wouldn't give him a refund, or The gang was out to raise hell that night, or The wind raised the devil with our picnic. The first term alludes to the son of Adam and Eve who killed his brother, Abel. It was first recorded in the St. Louis Daily Pennant (May 2, 1840): "Why have we every reason to believe that Adam and Eve were both rowdies? Because ... they both raised Cain.". This statement makes a pun on raise, meaning "bring up" or "nurturing." The two variants, alluding to bringing hell or the devil up to this world, are older, the first from about 1700, the second from about 1800.
See also: Cain, raise

raise Cain

create trouble or a commotion. informal
The sense of raise in this expression is that of summoning a spirit, especially an evil one; similar sayings include raise the Devil and raise hell . A mid 19th-century expression originating in the USA, the particular form raise Cain is possibly a euphemism to avoid using the words Devil or hell . Cain, according to the biblical book of Genesis, was the first murderer.
See also: Cain, raise

the mark of Cain

the stigma of a murderer; a sign of infamy.
According to the book of Genesis, God placed a mark on Cain after the murder of his brother Abel, originally as a sign that he should not be killed or harmed; this was later taken to identify him as a murderer (Genesis 4:15).
See also: Cain, mark, of

raise ˈCain/ˈhell

(informal) complain or protest noisily and angrily, often as a way of getting something you want: He’ll raise hell if we don’t finish on time. ▶ ˈhell-raiser noun a violent and destructive person Cain was the first murderer in the Bible.
See also: Cain, hell, raise

raise Cain

(...ken)
tv. to make a lot of trouble; to raise hell. Fred was really raising Cain about the whole matter.
See also: Cain, raise

raise Cain, to

To make a disturbance. This nineteenth-century Americanism alludes to the wicked biblical Cain, who killed his brother Abel (Genesis 4:5). Raising Cain is equivalent to “raising the devil.” The earliest appearances of this expression in print date from the 1840s, but by the second half of the nineteenth century it had crossed the Atlantic and was used by Robert Louis Stevenson in Treasure Island (“I’m a man that has lived rough, and I’ll raise Cain”) and Rudyard Kipling in The Ballad of the Bolivar (“Seven men from all the world back to Docks again, / Rolling down the Ratcliffe Road, drunk and raising Cain”). A more straightforward synonym is to raise hell, an Americanism that dates from the late 1800s and gave rise to the slogan, “Kansas should raise less corn and more hell.”Yet another Americanism from the same period is to raise a ruckus, the noun ruckus possibly derived from rumpus.
See also: raise
References in periodicals archive ?
Mr Cain married his wife Antoinette at St Andrew's Cathedral, in Dundee, on February 11 1953.
Sentence was deferred on Cain until Wednesday for the preparation of a background report but the court heard no such report was available and he twice left meetings with a social worker.
Though Charity and Cain make a beautiful bride and groom, she just can't go through with it when he plans a surprise wedding - and jilts him at the altar.
4:7), God makes Cain aware of the consequences of allowing his feelings, justified as they may seem, to fester.
In accepting Cain, POC president Jose Cojuangco Jr.
The aim is for Aston Cain to be turning over a revenue of PS150,000 over the next 12 months.
HELLO STRANGER: Joanie and little Kyle surprise Cain
In Healing Neen, Tonier Cain uses her life story to show the cycle of trauma and the path to healing through faith in Jesus.
As executive editor, Cain will be responsible for the channel's content, including videos and commentary, and excerpts from his daily radio show, among other things.
25 September 2014 - US investment group Cain Hoy Enterprises LLC announced today it had decided to abandon its plans to make a cash offer for Tottenham Hotspurs Limited.
WILDLIFE photographer and film maker Cain Scrimgeour has scoured the most remote parts of the region in his search for subjects.
The San Francisco Giants placed Matt Cain back on the 15-day disabled list after being ruled out of Saturday's game against the St.