cage


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to cage: Faraday cage

gilded cage

A life of wealth and luxury but without true freedom, happiness, or contentment. She married her husband because of his fortune, but her lonely life inside their mansion with a man she did not love quickly became a gilded cage.
See also: cage, gild

be (like) a bird in a gilded cage

To live a life of wealth and luxury but to be without true freedom, happiness, or contentment. She married her husband because of his fortune, and now she is a bird in a gilded cage, living her lonely life inside their empty mansion with a man she does not love. John forsook his friends and family in the pursuit of his riches, but with no friends or loved ones, he is now like a bird in a gilded cage.
See also: bird, cage, gild

cage (someone or something) in

To trap or enclose one in a particular space or area. We're getting new floors put in downstairs, so we're all caged in upstairs right now. Be sure to close the gate and cage the dog in the back yard.
See also: cage

cage (someone or something) up (in something)

To trap or enclose one in a particular space or area. Be sure to close the gate and cage the dog up in the back yard.
See also: cage, up

rattle (one's) cage

To purposefully anger, upset, or unnerve one, especially to affect their performance or undermine their credibility. He makes a point of taunting his opponents before each match in order to rattle their cage. The audience member asked a number of embarrassing questions about her past in an obvious attempt to rattle her cage.
See also: cage, rattle

cage someone or something in

 
1. Lit. to enclose someone or something in a cage. We caged the monkey in, but it threw a fit. We are going to have to cage in the dogs.
2. Fig. to confine someone or something. Please don't cage me in this tiny room! The health authorities virtually caged in the quarantined population until they could all be tested.
See also: cage

cage someone or something up (in something)

to enclose or confine someone or something in something or someplace. They caged the lions up in strong containers for the trip across country. How long did it take to cage up the lions securely?
See also: cage, up

gilded cage

The encumbrances or limitations that often accompany material wealth, as in She had furs, jewelry, whatever money could buy, but was trapped in a gilded cage. This metaphoric expression indicating that riches cannot buy happiness was popularized (and possibly coined) in a song, "A Bird in a Gilded Cage" (1990; lyrics by Arthur J. Lamb, music by Harry von Tilzer), about a young girl marrying for wealth instead of love and paying for luxury with a life of regret.
See also: cage, gild

rattle someone's cage

If you rattle someone's cage, you do or say something that upsets or annoys them. One thing I've learnt as an editor is that you can't create a truly superb magazine without rattling someone's cage. I don't rattle their cages and they don't rattle mine.
See also: cage, rattle

rattle someone's cage

make someone feel angry or annoyed, usually deliberately. informal
A humorous comparison is implied between the person annoyed in this way and a dangerous animal taunted by spectators outside its cage.
See also: cage, rattle

ˌrattle somebody’s ˈcage

(informal) annoy somebody: Who’s rattled his cage? OPPOSITE: smooth (somebody’s) ruffled feathers
See also: cage, rattle

bear cage

n. a police station. (Citizens band radio.) Have you ever been in a country bear cage?
See also: bear, cage

the cage of anger

n. a prison. (Streets.) The judge put JoJo into the cage of anger for a three-year stretch.
See also: anger, cage, of
References in classic literature ?
As he squatted there watching the proceeding beneath him, he saw the warriors seize upon the cage once more and drag it between two huts.
He saw that Numa was still alive and that the guards were even dozing beside the cage.
The cage was now unguarded, the two warriors having left it to take their places among the other dancers.
Behind the cage Tarzan adjusted the lion's skin about him, just as he had upon that memorable occasion when the apes of Kerchak, failing to pierce his disguise, had all but slain him.
The strong light from the fire fell full upon the lion head and the blacks leaped to the conclusion, as Tarzan had known they would, that their captive had escaped his cage.
They had been hunting a lion securely housed within a strong cage, and now that he was at liberty among them, an entirely different aspect was placed upon the matter.
This is just a most unfortunate affair; but what would ye have me do -- boxed up in this bee-skep of a cage of mine -- but just set my friends to the cartes, when I can get them?
The racks without your cages are filled with blades.
The lamentable voice which had proceeded from the cage had frozen all present, even Master Olivier himself.
In addition to this there hath been paid to a mason who hath made the holes wherein to place the gratings of the windows, and the floor of the chamber where the cage is, because that floor could not support this cage by reason of its weight, twenty-seven livres fourteen sols parisis.
I have been shivering in an iron cage for fourteen years.
He tore the book from Master Olivier's hands, and set to reckoning it himself upon his fingers, examining the paper and the cage alternately.
He turned his back on the cage, and set out to leave the room.
In the hurry they have forgotten to shut your cage, and the upper window is open.
At a signal from Dak Kova the doors of two cages were thrown open and a dozen green Martian females were driven to the center of the arena.