pin someone's ears back(redirected from pin back one's ears)
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pin back (one's) ears
1. To harshly reprimand one. Also seen as "pin (one's) ears back." The principal pinned back Jeff's ears for what he did in the cafeteria. My parents are going to pin my ears back if I'm not home by curfew.
2. To definitively defeat one. Also seen as "pin (one's) ears back." I knew the other team was better, but I didn't think they would pin back our ears so dominantly. Dude, Kristina is a star tennis player—she's going to pin your ears back out there.
3. To beat or strike one, especially targeting the head. Also seen as "pin (one's) ears back." Talk to me like that again and I'll pin back your ears, boy! Don't cross Rufus or he'll pin your ears back. I've seen him do it.
4. To listen carefully. Typically used as an imperative. Also seen as "pin (one's) ears back." Primarily heard in UK. Pin back your ears while the teacher is talking so you don't miss the assignment. My boss told me to pin my ears back during the meeting, but I was already listening closely.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
pin someone's ears back
Defeat, overcome, punish, as in The Red Sox had their ears pinned back by the Yankees, or You'll get your ears pinned back if you're late. [c. 1940]
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.
pin someone's ears backAMERICAN
If you pin someone's ears back, you tell them off for having done something wrong. I've had some grandparents pin their 40-year-old son's ears back.
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
pin someone’s ears back
1. tv. to scold someone severely. The teacher pinned the kids’ ears back for chewing gum.
2. tv. to beat someone, especially about the head. You do something like that again, and I’ll pin your ears back.
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.