from my cold, dead hands

from my cold, dead hands

A phrase used to indicate that someone is unwilling to give something up (thus, the item would need to be pried from one's "cold, dead hands"). The phrase gained popularity after Charlton Heston used it in a speech in support of the National Rifle Association. If you want me to stop practicing at night, you'll have to pry my trumpet from my cold, dead hands!
See also: dead, hand
References in periodicals archive ?
There are a lot of opinions on this topic, ranging from, "They can have ATC fees when they pry them from my cold, dead hands," to the more thoughtful one on the opposite page.
Congress by declaring to Connecticut lawmakers: "I will tell you here today, you will take my ability to protect my Victoria from my cold, dead hands.
It still uses the slogan: "I'll give you my gun when you pry it from my cold, dead hands.
The National Rifle Association, the most powerful lobby in Washington, kills any attempt at control, its philosophy summed up in 2000 by its then president Charlton Heston: "I'll give you my gun when you prise it from my cold, dead hands.
If they want this information, I told them that they're going to have to pry it from my cold, dead hands," he said.
Holding a rifle above his head, he declared: "I have only five words for you: From my cold, dead hands.