beat down to size

beat (one) down to size

To humble one. The phrase can be used for both verbal and physical confrontations. Someone needs to beat these new interns down to size—they refused to stuff envelopes! The whole class gathered to watch the fight in the schoolyard because someone was finally beating the big bully down to size!
See also: beat, down, size, to
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

beat someone down to size

 and knock someone down to size
Fig. to make a person more humble, sometime by actual physical beating. If you keep acting so arrogant, someone is going to beat you down to size. It's time someone knocked you down to size. I'll try to be less arrogant. I don't want anyone to beat me down to size.
See also: beat, down, size, to
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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