grim

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Related to grimmest: grimiest

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 ?
The International Crisis Group, an advocacy organization aiming to prevent and resolve deadly conflict, called July 2006 "the grimmest month for conflict prevention around the world in three years.
But the arrival of Hamas brew reminds us of one encouraging tendency in the Middle East: the ability to make a buck during the grimmest of times.
Even though the IBA work mitigates the grimmest aspects of Berlin, it scarcely seems sensible to make the physical pattern of West Berlin one for the world in general.
Yet perhaps the grimmest implication of Eye/Machine is left unspoken, if not unseen.
Perhaps the grimmest foreshadowing of a post-FTAA world is seen in the unspeakable trade of sex slave immigrants--a growing evil already within our borders.
One of the grimmest aspects of the spill's effect on Cordova has been the state of the once highly coveted commercial fishing permits.
The situation in Iraq has reached its grimmest point since U.
When president Bush announced during this year's State of the Union speech two major initiatives to fight AIDS and poverty" in poor countries in and outside Africa, the promise of such bold proposals from the world's wealthiest nation surely meant a respite for thousands who live and toil in this grimmest of realities.
It was in that revolution, with men like Robespierre, that the Leninist ideal of the unsmiling "professional revolutionary" was born--a type every bit as hostile to spontaneity and self-indulgence as the grimmest of the old Calvinist merchant class.
One of the most famous and grimmest of these is Mathias Grunewald's Isenheim Altarpiece of 1515, painted for a monastic church attached to a hospice for victims of skin diseases.
One of the grimmest stories since the end of the Second World War is largely unknown to most people in the western world, particularly Canadians: the Indonesian invasion of East Timor in 1975.
While they concede that the "green revolution" and some successful population-control programs did give us a reprieve from that book's grimmest prophecies, no new food miracles are in sight (crop yields worldwide have leveled off) and there will be 6 billion people to feed by 1999.
Captain Carpenter got up on his roan And sallied from the gate in hell's despite I heard him asking in the grimmest tone If any enemy yet there was to fight?
Thomas Gradgrind, a fanatic of the demonstrable fact, has raised his children, Tom and Louisa, in an atmosphere of grimmest practicality.
That was the grimmest time I had, hearing men calling for their wives, men who couldn't swim and knowing what was happening.