prostrate (oneself) before (someone or something)

(redirected from prostrating themselves before)
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!

prostrate (oneself) before (someone or something)

To lie down in a supplicatory position of obedience, submission, respect, or fealty to someone or something. I will never bow to you—I only prostrate myself before God. The only thing you can do is prostrate yourself before her and beg for her forgiveness.
See also: before, prostrate

prostrate oneself before someone or something

 
1. Lit. to lay oneself out in respect or obedience in front of someone or something. The members of the cult prostrated themselves before their leader. They prostrated themselves before the altar.
2. Fig. to submit to someone's dominance. If you think I'm going to prostrate my self before you and do as you ask, you are wrong. I will not prostrate myself before the high council!
See also: before, prostrate
References in classic literature ?
Still I see nothing but a tumultuous mob of idiots and madmen, who are busy in prostrating themselves before a gigantic cameleopard, and endeavoring to obtain a kiss of the animal's hoofs.
When we speak of translation in these end-of-days, it is often in the loftiest of tones, as though it were a sacred duty undertaken by devoted adepts prostrating themselves before the altar of language.
Many pilgrims travel on their knees, prostrating themselves before images of the Buddha.
Undeniable proof of why our nation is still hooked on pantomime: grateful peasants prostrating themselves before medieval monarchs.
Whether the voices came from those singing hymns to the Creator or those prostrating themselves before Him, the practice of faith was suppressed.
And what Gordon Brown, the Chancellor, had hoped would be a simple coronation, with everyone else prostrating themselves before him, is now transforming itself into a cross between a carnival, a freak show, and a pantomime, with all sorts of oddballs hinting that they may have a go.
Instead of prostrating themselves before the Lord, they are engaging in another tradition.
Prime ministers and presidents in India ridicule secularism by prostrating themselves before the "super godman" Sai Baba and his like.
And they did so with "delight." When faced with the mystery of Christmas--God in the form of a baby--the Magi responded in faith, humbly prostrating themselves before the child.
And then there are uplift-noble- savage touches, deploring a church service: "There was something terribly sad about the way these proud Indian people had been reduced to prostrating themselves before an imported God."