go to the devil/hell

go to the devil/hell

Go away and don’t come back. These two imperatives date from the Middle Ages, when most of the Western world believed that unrepentant sinners were, after death, condemned to eternal punishment in a place called hell presided over by an evil spirit called the devil. Go to the devil appears in several parts of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, and go to hell in numerous later writings. Also see go to hell in a handbasket.
See also: devil, go, hell
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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