keep (one) on a string

keep (one) on a string

To maintain great influence over one. If you want to keep someone on a string, flattery always helps.
See also: keep, on, string
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

have/keep somebody on a ˈstring

make somebody do what you want because you have control over them: Of course, he’s rich and powerful enough to keep several people on a string.
This idiom refers to a puppet (= a model of a person or an animal) that is controlled with strings attached to parts of its body.
See also: have, keep, on, somebody, string
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
See also:
Idioms browser ?
Full browser ?