pain in the neck


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

pain in the neck

A person or thing that is extremely annoying or inconvenient. Getting boxes in and out of the attic is a real pain in the neck.
See also: neck, pain

pain-in-the-neck

(used before a noun) Very irritating, aggravating, or obnoxious. I've still got a few pain-in-the-neck jobs to do around the farm before I can call it quits for the day. We're having Mary over for dinner tomorrow night. I just hope her pain-in-the-neck husband doesn't come along as well.

pain in the neck

Fig. a bother; an annoyance. This assignment is a pain in the neck. Your little brother is a pain in the neck.
See also: neck, pain

pain in the neck

Also, pain in the ass or butt . A source of annoyance, a nuisance, as in Joan is a real pain in the neck, with her constant complaining, or Jack told his brother to stop being a pain in the ass. The first of these colloquial expressions dates from about 1900 and originated as a euphemism for the two less polite variants.
See also: neck, pain

a pain in the neck

INFORMAL
COMMON If someone or something is a pain in the neck, they are very annoying. He was a pain in the neck. I was glad when he left my department. `Sorry,' he said. `They've forgotten to insure the plane. It's a pain in the neck, but what can I do?'
See also: neck, pain

a pain in the neck

an annoying or tedious person or thing. informal
There are a number of vulgar slang alternatives to neck in this idiom, such as a pain in the arse or, in the USA, ass .
See also: neck, pain

a pain in the ˈneck

(British English also a pain in the ˈarsetaboo/ˈbum/ˈbackside) (American English also a pain in the ˈasstaboo/ˈbutt) (informal) a person or thing that you find annoying: Her new boyfriend is a real pain in the neck — he never stops talking.
See also: neck, pain

pain in the neck

n. a difficult or annoying thing or person. (see also pain in the ass.) My boss is a pain in the neck.
See also: neck, pain

pain in the neck, a

A nuisance. This term replaced the earlier pain in the stomach about the turn of the twentieth century; both are euphemisms for a pain in the posterior—pain in the butt, pain in the ass. Rolling Stone (April 7, 1977) had it: “It was an increasing pain in the ass to do the same material each night.”
See also: pain
References in periodicals archive ?
WHAT TO DO FOR A PAIN IN THE NECK: The Complete Program for Neck Pain Relief is available at your local bookstore or favorite dot.com bookseller.
Individuals suffering from these symptoms are often viewed as a pain in the neck by physicians, who shuttle them from specialist to specialist and misdiagnose their underlying problem for years, says Stanley Lesse of the Neurological Institute of New York.
He can be a pain in the neck. If there is anything he doesn't like, he will tell you right away.