grim

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hang on like grim death

To clutch something very tightly, usually to avoid falling. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. After the ladder tipped over, I hung on like grim death so that I didn't fall off the roof.
See also: death, grim, hang, like, on

paint a (some kind of) picture of (something)

To give an elaborate or detailed description of something that portrays it in a specific way. The board meeting painted a pretty grim picture of the company's future. Jonathan always paints an idyllic picture of our childhood, glossing over the bad memories of our father.
See also: kind, of, paint, picture

Grim Reaper

Death, as personified by a cloaked man or skeleton carrying a scythe. She's been in three really terrible car accidents but has miraculously avoided the Grim Reaper.
See also: grim, reaper

hang on to (someone or something) like grim death

To clutch someone or something very tightly, usually to avoid falling. After the ladder tipped over, I hung on to the roof like grim death so that I didn't fall.
See also: death, grim, hang, like, on

hold on to (someone or something) like grim death

To clutch someone or something very tightly, usually to avoid falling. After the ladder tipped over, I held on to the roof like grim death so that I didn't fall.
See also: death, grim, hold, like, on

like grim death

With a very tight, intense, and determined grip. After the ladder tipped over, I hung onto the edge of the roof like grim death. Even on the sheerest of cliff faces, there are still small animals and bits of vegetation clung like grim death.
See also: death, grim, like

grim reaper

Fig. death. I think I have a few years to go yet before the grim reaper pays me a call.
See also: grim, reaper

like grim death

mainly BRITISH
If you hold onto something like grim death, you hold onto it very tightly. I clung to the chain like grim death.
See also: death, grim, like

the Grim Reaper

The Grim Reaper is an imaginary character who represents death. He looks like a skeleton, wears a long, black cloak with a hood, and carries a scythe (= tool for cutting grass). By giving away assets while still alive, inheritance tax can be avoided entirely by the time the Grim Reaper calls. They were sitting around, waiting for the Grim Reaper.
See also: grim, reaper

like (or for) grim death

with intense determination.
1989 Jonathan Gash Jade Woman Here and there a greenish scumble of vegetation hung on for grim death.
See also: death, grim, like

the Grim Reaper

a personification of death in the form of a cloaked skeleton wielding a large scythe.
See also: grim, reaper

hang on/hold on (to somebody/something) like grim ˈdeath

hold somebody/something very tightly, usually because you are afraid or determined not to let go: As the horse galloped off, you could see poor Sarah hanging on like grim death.The robbers tried to steal my bag, but I held on to it like grim death.
The word grim (= very serious or unpleasant) is often used to describe death.
See also: death, grim, hang, hold, like, on
References in periodicals archive ?
Jack Collins (10 points, 10 rebounds) helped get the Warriors (11-6, 5-1) off to a good start along with Grimmer by combining for 11 of the Warriors' 17 first-quarter points and a 17-11 lead.
COVENTRY: O'Brien 8, Grimmer 8, Willis 8, Davies 7, Stokes 7, Maguire-Drew 7 (Stevenson 63, 7), Bayliss 8, Doyle 7, Shipley 7 (Haynes 84), McNulty 8, Biamou 7.
THE GRIMM REAPER Coventry's Jack Grimmer slams home the winner and celebrates (below) with boss Mark Robins
J M Dizon, (1,2) PhD, MSPT, BSPT; K Grimmer, (3,4) PhD, MMedSc, LMusA, BPt, Cert Health Economics; Q Louw, (4) PhD, MASP, BSc (Physio); T Kredo, (5) MMed (Clin Pharm), MB ChB, Dip HIV Man; T Young, (1,5) PhD, MMed, FCPHM, MB ChB; S Machingaidze, (5,6) MPH, BSc Hons, BSc
CCTV was played at Liverpool Crown Court which showed the moment Pierce stabbed Mr Grimmer, who fled clutching his stomach.
Grimmer will drive the Sheraton standards and reputation, while innovating new personalized touchpoints at Vana Belle Resort.
Grimmer said, 'I'm excited about advising Paradigm at a time when we see such rapid change in the media industry and the increasing popularity of social media.
An imaginative force and designer of ideas, products and brands, Grimmer has led the launch of 150-plus innovative products, including the award-winning spouted pouch for baby, a format that has completely revolutionized the category.
Back row left to right: Valerie Jones, Jennifer Smith, unknown, Janet Rutland, Janet Haley, Dorothy Jones, Jennifer Cane, Aileen Grimmer, Doreen Cruse, Frances Biggs, Jennifer Woodward, Joyce Grainger, Eileen Griffiths, unknown, Marlene ?
Neil Vance, who farms 350 acres at Upper Grimmer, Minsterley, near Shrewsbury, plans to sell around 100 cattle from his Winnington herd.
MOTHER-OF-TWO Michelle Grimmer was diagnosed with skin cancer four years ago.
Country: UK, Sector: Machinery/EngineeringTarget: Thermtec LtdBuyer: Nibe Industrier ABVendor: John Grimmer Type: Corporate acquisitionStatus: Agreed
Yearly figures are even grimmer, with Spain losing 20.
But it's Reviver's first song, "Don't Lie," that entwines a newer, grimmer Abe Vigoda with the group's obvious pep.