lick (one's) wounds

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lick (one's) wounds

To withdraw after a misstep or defeat in order to recover. I think the senator will be licking his wounds for a while after that disastrous debate performance.
See also: lick, wound
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

lick one's wounds

Fig. to recover from a defeat or a rebuke. (Also literal for an animal.) After the terrible meeting and all the criticism, I went back to my office to lick my wounds.
See also: lick, wound
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

lick one's wounds

Recuperate from injuries or hurt feelings. For example, They were badly beaten in the debate and went home sadly to lick their wounds. This expression alludes to an animal's behavior when wounded. It was originally put as lick oneself clean or whole, dating from the mid-1500s.
See also: lick, wound
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

lick your wounds

COMMON If someone licks their wounds, they feel embarrassed and disappointed, especially after being defeated very easily. England's cricketers are licking their wounds after being soundly defeated in the second Test against Australia at Melbourne. Note: Some animals, such as dogs and cats, lick their wounds when they are injured.
See also: lick, wound
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

lick your wounds

retire to recover your strength or confidence after a defeat or humiliating experience.
See also: lick, wound
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

lick your ˈwounds

spend time trying to get your strength and confidence back after a defeat or disappointment: ‘He heard this morning that he hasn’t got the job.’ ‘Where is he?’ ‘Licking his wounds somewhere, probably.’
See also: lick, wound
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

lick (one's) wounds

To recuperate after a defeat.
See also: lick, wound
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in classic literature ?
As soon as Hunsden had brought him home, and had informed me of the circumstance, I went into the yard and shot him where he lay licking his wound: he was dead in an instant; he had not seen me level the gun; I stood behind him.
A heartbreaking play-off semi-final loss followed to leave a gutted Stockdale licking his wounds. And the keeper says the agony of missing out ruined his summer break as he battled to pick himself off the floor.
The two-time Olympic champion is still licking his wounds after coming eighth in last Sunday's London Marathon and has pledged to take his time to decide whether to compete in Glasgow.
He might have considered turning his back on the game, licking his wounds and moving back towards the type of media work he been doing for much of the last decade.
PAUL WELLER - LIVE AT THE BBC SOME will be daunted by the amount on offer here - there's four CDs - but rather than being extraneous, such a wealth of music offers a clear insight into Weller's transition from down-at-heel musician, still licking his wounds from The Style Council's demise, to where he stands now.
The England Under-21 ace was licking his wounds after Blues lost last month's Second City derby 5-1 at Villa Park when raiders tried to make off with his prized possessions.
Meanwhile, Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg was licking his wounds after almost a quarter of his party defied a three-line whip to vote with the Tories in support of a referendum.
Singh, 4-1 favourite for the Honda Classic, is licking his wounds after Tiger Woods ended his 26-week reign at the top of the rankings on Sunday and the Fijian said: ``I haven't played well all year.
The father is licking his wounds since his wife took time out to travel to New Zealand, while Genevieve, the eldest daughter, is left to run the B&B while coping alone with a traumatic event.
GEORGE Galloway didn't waste much time licking his wounds after being kicked out of the Labour Party.
The midfielder ended up in hospital licking his wounds after a passing car nudged him off his delivery bike and straight into a heavyweight lorry.
BOOKMAKER Freddie Williams was left licking his wounds after the victory of It Takes Time at Cheltenham yesterday, having laid the Martin Pipe-trained gelding to lose pounds 175,000 in a single bet.
As Hendry sat in his Auchterarder home licking his wounds after being mauled 17-4 by Ronnie O'Sullivan, Doyle did not spare his blushes.
The dog is currently licking his wounds, quite literally, after injuring a metacarpal bone at Crayford earlier this month.
The Manc rocker is licking his wounds after a bust-up with another singer.