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a dose of (one's) own medicine
An experience of the same harmful or unpleasant thing that one has inflicted on others or an attack in the same manner in which one attacks others. John has gossiped about everyone in our group, so we gave him a dose of his own medicine by spreading rumors about him. The coup gave the dictatorship a dose of its own medicine, subjecting the dictator and his entourage to torture and confinement in deplorable conditions. This team likes to play dirty, so I think it's time they got a dose of their own medicine!
a taste of (one's) own medicine
An experience of the same harmful or unpleasant thing that one has inflicted on others; an attack in the same manner in which one attacks others. Doug is a bully—of course he won't like it when his victims fight back and give him a taste of his own medicine. This team likes to play rough, so let's go out there and give them a taste of their own medicine! The coup gave the dictatorship a dose of its own medicine, subjecting the dictator and his entourage to torture and confinement in deplorable conditions.
get a dose of (one's) own medicine
To have an experience of the same harmful or unpleasant thing that one has inflicted on others; to experience an attack in the same manner in which one attacks others. Doug has always been a bully, but now the new manager has him under her thumb, so he's finally getting a dose of his own medicine. This team likes to play dirty, so I think it's time they got a dose of their own medicine!
give (one) a dose of (one's) own medicine
To do the same harmful or unpleasant thing that one has inflicted on others or to attack in the same manner in which one attacks others. Bill is always excluding me from things, so I'm going to give him a dose of his own medicine and not invite him to my party. This team likes to play tough defense, so let's give them a dose of their own medicine and not give them any space to score.
give (one) a taste of (one's) own medicine
To do the same harmful or unpleasant thing that one has inflicted on others or to attack in the same manner in which one attacks others. Bill is always excluding me from things, so I'm going to give him a taste of his own medicine and not invite him to my party. This team likes to play tough defense, so let's give them a taste of their own medicine and not give them any space to score.
go (right) through (one) like a dose of salts
Of food, drink, or medicine, to be rapidly excreted from the body (as urine or feces) very soon after being ingested. A reference to the use of Epsom salts as a laxative. I try not to drink more than one cup of coffee, it just goes right through me like a dose of salts! I love Indian food, but I eat it so infrequently that when I do, it goes through me like a dose of salts.
1. To physically travel through something. Once you go through this corridor, turn right.
2. To be initially screened or handled by another person. All of my calls go through my secretary, and I never got a message that you called.
3. To scrutinize something; to look at something very carefully. We need to go through these files with a fine-tooth comb to find that missing paperwork. Make sure to go through your thesis completely before you hand it in—you don't want your advisors wading through proofreading errors, do you?
4. To do something that one had planned or promised, in spite of difficulties, hesitations, or a concerning outcome. Always followed by "with (something)." Are you sure you want to go through with this? If the investment doesn't pan out, you could lose everything. She still went through with her decision to start her own business, even though it meant sacrificing her lucrative career.
5. To endure something unpleasant or difficult. I'm so sorry that you had to go through such a traumatic experience.
6. Of food, to leave one's body as waste soon after being ingested. Is the bathroom free? Food like that just goes right through me.
7. To penetrate something. If that rusty nail went through the skin, we better get you to the hospital.
8. To rehearse or practice something. We need to go through our lines before we take the stage.
9. To be approved. How long will it take our contract to go through?
10. To deplete a supply of something. Wow, the kids went through all those cupcakes already?
11. To be successfully transmitted and received, as of phone calls or emails. Are anyone's calls going through? I sent that email last night but it looks like it didn't go through.
12. To continue to the next stage of something. If we win this round, we go through to the championship! I hope I go through to the next round of interviews.
in small doses
In only small increments or short periods of time. The book is incredibly dense, so I suggest reading it in small doses. John can be quite funny, but I can only handle him in small doses.
the dose makes the poison
The toxicity of a substance is more closely related to the amount consumed than its chemical composition. Acetaminophen can be an effective pain reliever and fever reducer, of course, but it can also be deadly in large doses. The dose makes the poison, after all.
those are the breaks
There is nothing we can do about the way things have unfolded, especially bad ones, so there is no reason to be upset about it; that's just the way things are. I'm pretty gutted about not getting into the grad school program I wanted, but hey, those are the breaks.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
go (right) through someoneand go through someone like a dose of the salts
Fig. [for something] to be excreted very soon after being eaten; [for something] to go immediately through the alimentary canal of a person. (Use with discretion.) No, thanks. This stuff just goes right through me. The coffee went through me like a dose of salts.
to be approved; to succeed in getting through the approval process. I sent the board of directors a proposal. I hope it goes through. We all hope that the new law goes through.
go through someone
1. Lit. to travel through someone's body; to go (right) through someone. That medicine went right through me.
2. Fig. to work through someone; to use someone as an intermediary. I can't give you the permission you seek. You will have to go through our main office. I have to go through the treasurer for all expenditures.
go through someone or something
[for something sharp] to penetrate someone or something. The sword went through the knight cleanly and quickly. The nail went through all three boards.
go through something
1. to search through something. She went through his pants pockets, looking for his wallet. He spent quite a while going through his desk, looking for the papers.
2. to use up all of something rapidly. We have gone through all the aspirin again! How can you go throughyour allowance so fast?
3. [for something] to pass through an opening. The piano wouldn't go through the door. Do you think that such a big truck can go through the tunnel under the river?
4. to pass through various stages or processes. The pickles went through a number of processes before they were packed. Johnny is going through a phase where he wants everything his way.
5. to work through something, such as an explanation or story. I went through my story again, carefully and in great detail. I would like to go through it again, so I can be sure to understand it.
6. to experience or endure something. You can't believe what I've gone through. Mary has gone through a lot lately.
7. to rehearse something; to practice something for performance. They went through the second act a number of times. We need to go through the whole play a few more times.
*a taste of one's own medicineand *a dose of one's own medicine
Fig. a sample of the unpleasantness that one has been giving other people. (Typically: get ~; have ~; give someone ~.) Now you see how it feels to have someone call you names! You are getting a taste of your own medicine! John, who is often rude and abrupt with people, was devastated when the teacher treated him rudely. He doesn't like having a dose of his own medicine.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
dose of one's own medicine
Also, taste of one's own medicine. Repayment or retaliation, as in It's time we gave them a dose of their own medicine and simply forget to call them back , or Joe was upset at being left out, but they were just giving him a taste of his own medicine . [Late 1800s]
1. Examine carefully, as in I went through all the students' papers. [Mid-1600s]
2. Experience, undergo, suffer, as in We went through hell trying to find an answer. [Early 1700s]
3. Perform; also, rehearse for performance. For example, I went through the sonata in ten minutes, or Let's go through the third act again. [Mid-1700s]
4. Use up, complete, as in The children went through all the milk we bought in one day. [Mid-1900s]
5. Succeed, be approved, as in I'm sure this new deal will go through. [Late 1800s]
6. go through with. Complete, carry out, as in They got engaged last year, but I'm not sure they'll go through with the wedding. [Mid-1500s]
go through one
1. Use as an intermediary, as in Bob can't release that; you'll have to go through the main office. Also see go through channels.
2. Also, go right through one (like a dose of salts). Be rapidly excreted without being digested. For example, I don't know why, but Thai cooking goes right through me, or That banana drink went through Dad like a dose of salts.
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.
in small doses
COMMON If you do something, experience something or spend time with someone in small doses, you do it, experience it, or spend time with them in small amounts or for short periods of time. I liked him in small doses. He may be right to assume most Germans favour reform only in small doses.
give someone a taste of their own medicineor
give someone a dose of their own medicine
If you give someone a taste of their own medicine or a dose of their own medicine, you treat them badly in the same way that they treated you. The famously aggressive interviewer was given a taste of his own medicine today when one caller asked him a series of very direct questions. I haven't called him for over a week. Giving him a dose of his own medicine — see how he likes it.
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
in small dosesexperienced or engaged in a little at a time.
1994 American Spectator In small doses, ironical detachment is as necessary for getting along in life as…any of the other human qualities.
like a dose of saltsvery fast and efficiently. British informal
The salts referred to in this expression are laxatives.
1991 Peter Carey The Tax Inspector She's going to go through your old man like a dose of salts.
a dose (or taste) of your own medicinethe same bad treatment that you have given to others.
The idea of taking or receiving your own medicine has been in metaphorical use since the mid 19th century.
1994 Eoin McNamee Resurrection Man Every time you turn on the telly there's some politician talking the mouth off himself, dose of their own medicine's what they want.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
like a dose of ˈsalts(old-fashioned, British English, informal) very fast and easily: We’ll go through this house like a dose of salts, cleaning it from top to bottom.
Salts in this phrase are laxatives (= medicine that makes you go to the toilet).
give somebody a taste/dose of their own ˈmedicinetreat somebody in the same unpleasant, unkind, rude, etc. way that they have treated you: Give her a dose of her own medicine and make her wait for you. Then maybe she won’t be so slow next time.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
1. To move or proceed into or within something, especially completely or from one side to the other: We turned on our headlights when we went through the tunnel. The ink went through the paper and stained the table. The larger fish got caught in the net, but the smaller fish went right through. We went through the field gathering flowers.
2. To form a path within something, especially completely or from one side to the other: The tunnel goes through the mountain. Only one path goes through this forest.
3. To send a message or signal successfully: My telephone calls aren't going through. I sent two e-mails, but neither went through.
4. To use someone or something as an intermediary for interacting or communicating: All of our customers' orders go through our sales department. Don't buy a car from them—go through a reputable dealer. If you need to contact me, go through my office.
5. To proceed to the next stage of a process or event: The winner of this match will go through to the finals.
6. To be accepted or enacted after going through an approval procedure. Used of proposals: If the new law goes through, we won't be able to park on that side of the street anymore.
7. To examine each of some set of things: I went through the students' papers, looking for the best one. Someone has been going through my mail without permission.
8. To review or search something completely: The lawyer went through the documents but couldn't find any useful information. I went through the drawer trying to find the earring I lost.
9. To experience something, especially something negative: We went through some tough times when my father lost his job. All our products go through months of testing. They went through a lot to get you that gift, so you'd better thank them.
10. To perform something from start to finish: The violinist went through the sonata in 30 minutes. Let's go through the dance from the beginning.
11. To use something until there is no more of it remaining; use something up: I went through an entire pack of cigarettes in two hours. My dogs go through two bags of food a week.
12. go through with To finish something, especially something difficult or which one does not want to do: We intended to eat the rabbit once it got big enough, but after the children gave it a name, we just couldn't go through with it. I decided not to go through with the surgery after I discovered how dangerous it was.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
go through someone like a dose of (the) salts
in. to move through someone’s digestive tract like a strong laxative. That stuff they served last night went through me like a dose of salts.
go through someone like a dose of saltsverb
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
own medicine, a dose/taste of one's
Repayment in kind; tit for tat. Although the idea is hardly new, the medicinal metaphor dates only from the late nineteenth century. V. Perdue used it in The Singing Clock (1941): “It was only fair for them to get a taste of their own medicine.”
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer