bite someone's head off(redirected from bite someone's nose off)
bite (one's) head off
To respond to one in an extremely angry and forceful manner that is often sudden or unprovoked. What's wrong with the boss today? I just tried to ask him a question, and he totally bit my head off!
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
bite someone's head off
Also, snap someone's head off. Scold or speak very angrily to someone, as in Ask her to step down from the board? She'd bite my head off! The first expression, dating from the mid-1900s, replaced the much earlier bite someone's nose off (16th century); the variant was first recorded in 1886.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
bite someone's head offor
snap someone's head offINFORMAL
If someone bites your head off or snaps your head off, they speak to you in an unpleasant, angry way, because they are annoyed about something. And don't bite my head off just because you're fed up! I don't know what's wrong with Julia but she snapped my head off just now.
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
bite (or snap) someone's head offreply sharply and brusquely to someone.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
bite someone's head off, to
To respond angrily to a moderate or harmless request or remark. It appears to have replaced two earlier versions, to bite someone’s nose off, which dates back to the sixteenth century (“She would . . . bite off a man’s nose with an answere,” Thomas Nashe, 1599), and to snap someone’s head off, current in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer