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beard (one) in (one's) den

To confront risk or danger head on, especially for the sake of possible personal gain. The phrase is a variation of the Biblical proverb "beard the lion in his den." OK, who is going to beard the boss in his den and tell him that the deal isn't happening?
See also: beard, den

beard the lion

To confront risk or danger head on, especially for the sake of possible personal gain. Refers to a proverb based on a Bible story from I Samuel, in which a shepherd, David, hunts down a lion that stole a lamb, grasps it by the beard, and kills it. Risks very often don't turn out well, but if you don't face them and beard the lion, you will never achieve the success you truly desire.
See also: beard, lion

beard the lion in his den

To confront risk or danger head on, especially for the sake of possible personal gain. Refers to a proverb based on a Bible story from I Samuel, in which a shepherd, David, hunts down a lion that stole a lamb, grasps it by the beard, and kills it. A risk very often doesn't turn out well, but if you don't face it and beard the lion in his den, you will never achieve the success you truly desire.
See also: beard, den, lion

den of iniquity

A place where seedy activities happen. I'm not surprised to hear that the police raided that club again—it's a den of iniquity!
See also: den, iniquity, of

the lion's den

A particularly dangerous, hostile, or oppressive place or situation, especially due to an angry or sinister person or group of people within it. I felt like I was walking into the lion's den when I went in front of the board for my annual review.
See also: den

walk into the lion's den

To enter into a particularly dangerous, hostile, or oppressive place or situation, especially due to an angry or sinister person or group of people within it. I felt like I was walking into the lion's den when I went in front of the board for my annual review.
See also: den, walk
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

beard the lion in his den

 and beard someone in his den
Prov. to confront someone on his or her own territory. I spent a week trying to reach Mr. Toynbee by phone, but his secretary always told me he was too busy to talk to me. Today I walked straight into his office and bearded the lion in his den. If the landlord doesn't contact us soon, we'll have to beard him in his den.
See also: beard, den, lion

den of iniquity

a place filled with criminal activity or wickedness. The town was a den of iniquity and vice was everywhere. Police raided the gambling house, calling it a den of iniquity.
See also: den, iniquity, of
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

beard the lion

Confront a danger, take a risk, as in I went straight to my boss, bearding the lion. This term was originally a Latin proverb based on a Bible story (I Samuel 17:35) about the shepherd David, who pursued a lion that had stolen a lamb, caught it by its beard, and killed it. By Shakespeare's time it was being used figuratively, as it is today. Sometimes the term is amplified to beard the lion in his den, which may combine the allusion with another Bible story, that of Daniel being shut in a lions' den for the night (Daniel 6:16-24).
See also: beard, lion
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.

a den of iniquity

If a place is a den of iniquity, a lot of immoral things happen there. As time went on, he realised he was working in a den of iniquity and that the corruption spread right to the top of the organization.
See also: den, iniquity, of

walk into the lion's den

COMMON If you walk into the lion's den, you deliberately place yourself in a dangerous or difficult situation. Confident that he had done no wrong, the Minister last night walked into the lion's den of his press accusers, looked them in the eye, and fought back. Note: Other verbs such as go, step, or venture can be used instead of walk. We need to win tonight's game, but we are going into the lion's den without one of our key men. Note: You can also say that someone is thrown or sent into the lion's den if they are put in a difficult or dangerous situation. She was eagerly accepted by the teaching agency, and thrown straight into the lion's den at a tough comprehensive school in Surrey. Note: This expression comes from the story in the Bible of Daniel, who was thrown into a den of lions because he refused to stop praying to God. However, he was protected by God and the lions did not hurt him. (Daniel 6)
See also: den, walk
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

beard the lion in his den (or lair)

confront or challenge someone on their own ground.
This phrase developed partly from the idea of being daring enough to take a lion by the beard and partly from the use of beard as a verb to mean ‘face’, i.e. to face a lion in his den.
See also: beard, den, lion

the lion's den

a demanding, intimidating, or unpleasant place or situation.
See also: den
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

a den of iˈniquity/ˈvice

(disapproving) a place where people do bad things: She thinks that just because we sit around smoking and drinking beer the club must be a real den of iniquity.
See also: den, iniquity, of, vice

the ˌlion’s ˈden

a difficult situation in which you have to face a person or people who are unfriendly or aggressive towards you: Before each one of her press conferences, she felt as if she were going into the lion’s den.This idiom comes from the story of Daniel in the Bible, who went into a lion’s den (= home) as a punishment but was not hurt by the lion.
See also: den
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

den of thieves, a

A group of individuals or a place strongly suspected of underhanded dealings. This term appears in the Bible (Matthew 21:13) when Jesus, driving the moneychangers from the Temple, said, “My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.” Daniel Defoe used the term in Robinson Crusoe, published in 1719, and by the late eighteenth century it was well known enough to be listed with other collective terms such as “House of Commons” in William Cobbett’s English Grammar in a discussion of syntax relating to pronouns.
See also: den, of
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Denning ecology in sympatric populations of skunks (Spilogale gracilis and Mephitis mephitis) in west-central texas.
Raccoon denning behavior in eastern Kansas as determined from radio-telemetry.
Chief Denning said the accidents were a "stone's throw away" from one another.
Denning has previous convictions in Britain for sex assaults on boys but claimed that he vowed in 1987 to give up illegal sexual activity.
Our observations of post-denning polar bear activity on the North Slope are consistent with studies done elsewhere, in that a) denning polar bears at this latitude emerged in the month of March, b) bears spent the majority of their time inside their dens, c) bears did not appear to be active at night, d) bears remained at dens for variable lengths of time (2-18 days in this study), and e) bear out-of-den activity was positively correlated with wind chill (e.g., the colder it was, the less bear activity).
Denning presented the group's findings at a meeting of the Computer System Security and Privacy Advisory Group, held late last month at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Md.
Key words: Arctic Coastal Plain, denning habitat, digital terrain model, DTM, IfSAR, maternal den, National Petroleum Reserve--Alaska, NPR-A, polar bear, Ursus maritimus
In particular, Nelson finds that denning bears normally turn potentially toxic nitrogen compounds into protein.
Denning, associated with pregnant females, is an integral part of the reproductive process and occurs in the winter months (Ramsay and Stirling, 1988; Amstrup, 2003).
Denning polar bears subjected to human disturbances may abandon dens before their altricial young can survive the rigors of the Arctic winter.
To date, considerable field work has focused on identification of polar bear maternity denning areas in order to provide protection from disturbance or habitat destruction that might cause a female to depart before her cubs were large enough to survive, or to cease future denning in a particular area altogether.
Female polar bears are faithful to general geographic areas, rather than to specific locations, and return to the same substrate (land versus sea ice) for consecutive denning (Amstrup and Gardner, 1994).
In a large polar bear denning area inland from the coast of western Hudson Bay south of Churchill, Manitoba, previous denning activity was determined by examining tree growth anomalies in the black spruce (Picea mariana) around and above den sites.
On aerial photos, we mapped 1782 km of bank habitats suitable for denning. Bank habitats comprised 0.18% of our study area between the Colville River and the Tamayariak River in northern Alaska.
Other possible explanations for their use include escape from insect harassment and maternity denning. This paper describes the types of structures dug, quantifies the age and sex classes of bears using them, and evaluates possible hypotheses to explain their function.