bring (someone or something) to (someone's or something's) knees(redirected from brought to knees)
bring (someone or something) to (someone's or something's) knees
1. To render a person or group submissive by weakening or defeating them. The general believes that such an attack will bring the opposing troops to their knees.
2. To disrupt or halt a process or thing. Unfortunately, a broken printer has brought the mailing project to its knees. Many fear that all of these new regulations will bring the stock market to its knees.
bring to one's knees
Make one submit; reduce to a position of subservience. For example, Solitary confinement usually brings prisoners to their knees. This particular phrase dates only from the late 1800s, although there were earlier versions alluding to being on one's knees as a gesture of submission.
bring someone to their knees
If something brings a person to their knees, it makes them extremely weak or tired. The pressure of other people's expectations brought me almost to my knees. Note: You can also say that someone is on their knees. Several times this afternoon he had sounded as if he were on his knees.
bring something to its knees
COMMON If something brings a country or organization to its knees, it damages or destroys them. The country was brought to its knees after a wave of strikes. Uncontrolled lending brought the economy to its knees. Note: You can also say that a country or organization is on its knees. The Government was on its knees.
bring someone or something to their kneesreduce someone or something to a state of weakness or submission.
1997 Sunday Times Doom and gloom merchants everywhere are predicting all kinds of plagues befalling the world's computer systems anytime now, bringing business to its knees.
bring somebody to their ˈkneesshow somebody that they are weak; defeat somebody, especially in a war
bring something to its ˈkneesbadly affect an organization, etc. so that it can no longer function: The strikes brought the industry to its knees.
bring to (one's) knees
To reduce to a position of subservience or submission.