give (one) both barrels

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give (one) both barrels

To scold, criticize, or attack one with full force. The phrase is a reference to double-barreled firearms. There was a printing error? Uh oh, the boss is definitely going to give us both barrels when she hears about it. Dad gave me both barrels when he saw that I put a dent in his brand-new car.
See also: barrel, both, give
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

give someone both barrels

INFORMAL
If you give someone both barrels, you criticize them fiercely and with force. She was angry and gave him both barrels. Note: You can also attack or criticize someone with both barrels. Let him have it with both barrels and then get out of the situation while you can. Note: This expression refers to the firing of both barrels of a double-barrelled gun.
See also: barrel, both, give, someone
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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