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1. To compel or physically force someone or oneself to swallow something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "force" and "down." This medicine tastes disgusting, but I do want to get better, so I'll force it down. The government has come under fire for ordering prison staff to force food down the hunger strikers' throats.
2. To push someone or something down. A noun or pronoun can be used between "force" and "down." Back when I used to be bigger than my brother, I could force him down with ease—not anymore!
3. To cause someone or something to move downward, such as a plane. A noun or pronoun can be used between "force" and "down." Severe turbulence forced the plane down—it had to make an emergency landing in Phoenix.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
force someone or something down
to press or push someone or something downward. I forced him down and slipped the handcuffs on him. The cop forced down the thug and handcuffed him. I forced the dog down and held it there.
force something down
to force oneself to swallow something. I can't stand sweet potatoes, but I manage to force them down just to keep from making a scene. She forced down the sweet potatoes.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. To cause someone or something to descend or land by use of force: Engine failure forced down the aircraft. On sighting the hostile helicopter, the soldier engaged it and forced it down.
2. To swallow something that one does not want to swallow: To be polite, I forced down the awful-tasting food. I forced the unpleasant cough syrup down.
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.