have the measure of someone

have the measure of someone

COMMON If you have the measure of someone or something, you understand them or know what they are like and are able therefore to deal with them. Lili was the only person I knew who had the measure of her brother. He had the measure of Allen and his friends, and he treated them with polite contempt. Note: You can also say that you get the measure of someone or something or take the measure of them, meaning that you discover what they are like. Amsterdam is that rare thing: a major city you can get the measure of in just four days. I was just taking the measure of the opposition.
See also: have, measure, of