pin back (one's) ears(redirected from pinning ears back)
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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
1. Fig. to beat someone, especially about the head. Don't talk to me like that or I will pin your ears back! Max wanted to pin back Lefty's ears for making fun of him.
2. Fig. to give someone a good scolding. Did you hear him? He really pinned Chuck's ears back. He pinned back Chuck's ears.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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 back your earsBRITISH, OLD-FASHIONED
1. If you pin back your ears, you listen carefully to what someone is saying. Right, children, pin back your ears because this is important.
2. In sport, if someone pins back their ears, they run very quickly in an attempt to score and help their team win. The Newport back division dropped the ball 30 metres out and Hughes pinned back his ears and raced to the line.
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 your ears backlisten carefully.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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.