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big bully

Someone who is overly critical, domineering, or authoritative, or who is physically or psychologically abusive. The intensifier "big" implies a level childishness, immaturity, or a lack of seriousness or severity if used by an adult. Don't take what he says too much to heart, he's just a big bully. Jeff's been a big bully since he got that promotion.
See also: big, bully

bully pulpit

A public position that allows a person to speak with authority and share their views with a large audience. James used his position of class president as a bully pulpit to raise awareness about cyberbullying.
See also: bully

bully for you

Good for you! Well done! Can also be used sarcastically to convey the speaker's annoyance. Primarily heard in UK. I heard you got promoted—bully for you! A: "I'm so excited to have a date to the dance!" B: "Well, bully for you! No one has asked me yet."
See also: bully

bully (one) into (something)

To thoroughly and continually dominate, intimidate, or browbeat someone into doing something. Oh, they've tried to bully us into accepting their subpar proposal, but we refuse to settle.
See also: bully

a bully is always a coward

A bully will only mistreat others perceived to be weaker. Of course he always picks on kids who are smaller than him. A bully is always a coward.
See also: always, bully, coward


To bother or badger someone. Would you quit bullyragging me? I didn't do anything wrong, I swear!

Bully for you!

1. an expression that praises someone or someone's courage. (Dated, but still heard.) The audience shouted, "Bravo! Bully for you!" Bob: I quit my job today. Sally: Bully for you! Now what are you going to do? Bob: Well, I need a little loan to tide me over.
2. a sarcastic phrase belittling someone's statement or accomplishment. Bob: I managed to save three dollars last week. Bill: Well, bully for you! Mary: I won a certificate good for a free meal! Sally: Bully for you!
See also: bully

bully is always a coward

Prov. Bullies will only intimidate people who are much weaker than they are, because they are afraid of losing a fight. Child: Dad, Joey keeps picking on me. How can I make him stop? Father: Try fighting back. A bully is always a coward. Bill took advantage of the younger children, but he was quiet and docile around the older ones. A bully is always a coward.
See also: always, bully, coward

bully someone into something

to harass or threaten someone into doing something. The coach tried to bully them into agreeing to stay late and practice. Don't try to bully me into your way of doing things.
See also: bully

bully for —!

well done!; good for (you, them, etc.)!
This expression takes its origin from the US colloquial sense of bully meaning ‘first-rate’, recorded since the mid 19th century.
See also: bully

bully for somebody!

(spoken) used to show that you do not think that what somebody has said or done is very impressive: ‘Janet’s just won a free holiday in Spain.’ ‘Oh, bully for her! She’s so rich anyway, she can afford to go away whenever she wants to.’
See also: bully


tv. & in. to harass someone. Don’t bullyrag me just because you’re upset.
References in periodicals archive ?
An important step towards standing up to bullies is maintaining eye contact.
Therefore, some researchers suggest that since bullying is a "group process," interventions against bullying should be targeted at the peer-group level rather than at individual bullies and victims (Salmivalli, 2010).
18) Fuelled by anger and aggression, bullies are skilled at controlling their outward appearance much of the time--especially in front of the people they want to impress.
Bullies are more likely to come from families with poor cohesiveness, little warmth, intolerance of different people, physical abuse, authoritarian parenting, and aggression.
Identification of school Bullies by survey methods.
He was born with a hearing impairment, and as a polite, book-loving child he was seen as an easy mark by bullies.
The opportunistic bully, who is self-centred and bullies to get ahead, who targets a person who is a threat to their success;
4-6 The association of being bullying to suicidal ideation/ suicide attempts is not only limited to students who were bullied but also reported by the bullies.
McMahon said one of his bullies, who kept calling him Fatso and Fat Boy, had been held back in school, and he pointed that out to him.
The only way bullies can be stopped is by parental intervention, which alerts teachers, or even better, the headteacher concerned.
VICTIMS of bullying at school, and bullies themselves, are more likely to experience psychiatric problems in childhood, studies have shown.
But bullies are not just confined to schoolyards; they are now in the workplace (Sweeney, 2007).
When a student bullies another student it is usually done in a passive aggressive way, but it can go on for a long time.
Primary and secondary schools have become a fertile arena for the bullies but an avoidable and unpleasant place for the victims of bullying.
There is a myth that the best first approach to addressing bullying is for targets to confront bullies directly.