get the best of (one)

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get the best of (one)

To overwhelm or take control of one. I never intend to be mean to Helena, but my nastiness gets the best of me whenever I'm around her.
See also: get, of
References in classic literature ?
You shuddered as you gazed, and wondered what monstrous cannibal and savage could ever have gone a death-harvesting with such a hacking, horrifying implement.
I was hacking at the root of a tree, when I beheld an iron ring fastened to a trapdoor of the same metal.
The confusion spread through the host, so that it seemed scarcely a moment before they were all hacking, hewing, and stabbing at one another, lopping off arms, heads, and legs and doing such memorable deeds that Jason was filled with immense admiration; although, at the same time, he could not help laughing to behold these mighty men punishing each other for an offense which he himself had committed.
And sure enough, he heaved up his weapon once more, and, hacking twice, brought down another and similar strip of fence, making the opening about fourteen feet wide in all.
The therns on their side would hasten to rescue the girl, and in an instant the two would be swallowed in the vortex of a maelstrom of yelling devils, hacking and hewing at one another, like fiends incarnate.
Most of the prisoners were already hacking at their bonds with the swords in their hands.
Percerin's workshop, which the Parisians rejoiced in hacking into so many pieces with the living human body it contained.
And over all this he worked, hacking away at the tough and slippery oiled silk and clinging stoutly to the netting.
There were fully a dozen cane- knives--big hacking weapons with razor-edges, capable of decapitating a man at a stroke.
Microscopically small had been the edges of the lung-tissue touched by the frost, but they now began to slough off, giving rise to a dry, hacking cough.
He had early learned that it was wise to get along well with sea-cooks, since sea-cocks were notoriously given to going suddenly lunatic and slicing and hacking up their shipmates with butcher knives and meat cleavers on the slightest remembered provocation.
Yellow Handkerchief sat down in the bottom alongside of me, and I could feel him straining to repress his raspy, hacking cough.
He gets a dry, hacking cough as the dead tissue sloughs away, and dies the following summer of pneumonia, wondering what it's all about.
Delicate Cousin Annetta standing at the dresser, with a big loaf of bread beside her and a big platterful of cold, boiled pork in front of her; and Annetta was hacking off great chunks, like Dan there, and gobbling them down as if she was starving.
Old Tarwater could shame them all, despite his creaking and crackling and the nasty hacking cough he had developed.