put the arm on(redirected from put the bite)
put the arm on (one)
To ask or pressure one for a loan or donation of money. Jane's good-for-nothing brother always comes skulking around our place every couple of weeks to put the arm on us for a few bucks. The alumni association of my old university puts the arm on me once or twice a year looking for a donation.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
put the arm on someone
Fig. to apply pressure to someone. John's been putting the arm on Mary to get her to go out with him. John has been putting the arm on Bill to get him to cooperate.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
put the arm on
Also, put the bite or touch on . Ask for or demand money, as in He's the youngest and he's always putting the arm on Dad. The first of these slangy usages, first recorded in 1939, alludes to a robber assaulting someone by yoking his arm around the victim's throat. The bite variant, first recorded in 1919, similarly alludes to a violent attack. The last, touch, has been slang for "theft" since the mid-1800s.
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.
put the arm onattempt to force or coerce someone to do something. North American informal
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