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Related to quakes: Earthquakes

quake like a leaf

To tremble violently with fear or nervousness. My brother is so strong and scary-looking that he leaves people quaking like a leaf when he threatens them. I was quaking like a leaf when I went up to deliver my speech.
See also: leaf, like, quake

quake in (one's) boots

To tremble with fear or nervousness. (Sometimes said sarcastically.) My brother is so strong and scary-looking that people quake in their boots when he threatens them. Ooh, I'm really scared of you! I'm quaking in my boots, you frighten me so!
See also: boot, quake

be quaking in (one's) boots

To be trembling with fear or nervousness. (Sometimes said sarcastically.) Ooh, I'm really scared of you! I'm quaking in my boots, you frighten me so!
See also: boot, quake

quake with something

to shake as with fear, terror, etc. Alice was quaking with fear as the door slowly opened. Todd quaked with terror when he saw the vicious dog at the door.
See also: quake

shake in one's boots

 and quake in one's boots
Fig. to be afraid; to shake from fear. I was shaking in my boots because I had to go see the manager for being late. Stop quaking in your boots, Bob. I'm not going to fire you.
See also: boot, shake

quake in one's boots

Also, shake in one's boots; quake or shake like a leaf . Tremble with fear, as in The very thought of a hurricane blowing in makes me quake in my boots. Both quake and shake here mean "tremble." These idioms were preceded by the alliterative phrase shake in one's shoes in the late 1800s. The idioms with leaf allude to trembling leaves, as in He was shaking like a leaf when the exams were handed back. A similar expression was used by Chaucer, who put it as quake like an aspen leaf, a particularly apt comparison since aspen leaves have flattened stems that cause the leaves to quiver in the gentlest breeze.
See also: boot, quake

be quaking in your boots

If someone is quaking in their boots, they are very frightened about something that is about to happen. If you stand up straight you'll give an impression of self confidence even if you're quaking in your boots. Note: Verbs such as shake, shiver, and tremble are sometimes used instead of quake. Someone had to tell the packed club that he wouldn't be appearing — you can imagine me shaking in my boots.
See also: boot, quake

(be) ˌquaking/ˌshaking in your ˈboots/ˈshoes

be very worried or frightened: The prospect of facing the team again in the semi-final had everyone quaking in their boots.
See also: boot, quake, shake, shoe
References in periodicals archive ?
The quake was centered extremely deep within the earth--82 kilometers (51 miles).
By constantly monitoring these conditions, the scientists hope to spot patterns in the way the rocks behave before breaking apart in a quake.
The 1960 quake in Chile caused $1 million in damage to the Los Angeles and Long Beach harbor areas, said Brian Atwater, a Seattle-based scientist with the U.
For example, they've carbon-dated samples of sediments that were disturbed by quakes that predate those known from mission records.
Some scientists speculated that Tuesday's quake was the one predicted to happen by 1993 - though a decade late.
Henson, 92, burned to death in her Northridge mobile home, one of dozens that caught fire after the quake knocked them off their foundations.
Scientists say another major difference between quakes in Turkey and the U.
The greatest ground motions caused by the simulated quakes appeared along the edges of the floodplain, where seismic waves traveling through the sediment bounced off the rocky edges of the river valley and reinforced each other.
17, 1994, quake and other past seismic activity have helped shape the development of the state, according to Susan Tubbesing, executive director of the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute.
Just because quakes shook Parkfield regularly for the past century does not mean the pattern will hold.
Alter studying ground-motion patterns of 71 quakes recorded by nearby seismometers, Alien and his colleagues noticed that the relative amounts of energy going into the two vibration categories varied systematically with the size of the quake.
The town's only fault: the San Andreas-- and a history of shaky quakes.
Both mild quakes were centered three miles south of the rural community of Val Verde, beneath an area planned for the 21,000-home Newhall Ranch subdivision.
As of press time, the largest of this week's quakes struck the region late Monday night Sumatran time.