run high

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run high

To be very intense; to increase to an intense level, typically due to a specific cause. Often said of "emotions" or "tensions." Of course they're arguing—emotions always run high when those two get together.
See also: high, run
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

running high

[for feelings] to be in a state of excitement or anger. Feelings were running high as the general election approached. The mood of the crowd was running high when they saw the mother slap her child.
See also: high, running
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

run high

Be intense, as in Feelings are running high on the issue of raising taxes. This expression, first recorded in 1711, transfers the strong currents or tides that make for high waves to human concerns.
See also: high, run
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.

run high

be strong or tumultuous.
The image here is of waves or tides rising above their normal height, especially in stormy conditions.
1993 Wall Street Journal Europe Everybody knows it is an exercise, but emotions nevertheless run high as the Army ‘augmentees’ warm to their roles.
See also: high, run
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

run ˈhigh

(especially of feelings) be strong and angry or excited: As usual, emotions ran high at the awards ceremony last night.
See also: high, run
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
But nationalistic feelings ran high. Some in Congress criticized President McKinley for waiting for a special court of inquiry to determine the cause of the blast.
Feelings ran high on the issue in New Zealand and her Pacific neighbours, as well as throughout the Commonwealth in general.
Last year, hope for a straightforward answer ran high. V Ramanathan and William Collins of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, Calif., proposed that cirrus clouds regulate ocean surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific (SN: 5/11/91, p.303).
Summary: Tension ran high Sunday at the Juveniles' building in Lebanon's largest prison, the Roumieh prison complex, northeast of Beirut, over the confiscation of mobile phones and other banned items, the National News Agency reported.
Therefore, when Ross Stretton, the last RB director, invited famed ballerina Natalia Makarova to mount a traditional Russian version for the 2003 season, expectations ran high (see Attitudes, DANCE MAGAZINE, July, page 78).
EMOTIONS ran high at Ford's biggest UK plant when the final car came off the production line to huge cheers from workers.
BARRY Wilson admits their Scottish Cup tie against Aberdeen should be very interesting after tensions ran high the last time the teams met.
When Kasting ran high concentrations of carbon dioxide through the model, he found that Rayleigh scattering would prevent significant amounts of solar radiation from reaching earth, ensuring that temperatures would not rise enough to cause a runaway greenhouse.
Ballet's mandated weeks in the Opera House) featured a mere pair of world premieres by Mark Morris and Val Caniparoli, but interest ran high, too, for three contemporary European choreographers who had not previously figured, except tangentially, in the company's planning.
The formation this past spring of another new Los Angeles Ballet (see pages 33-34) held enormous hope for dancers and, indeed, many promises were made and, based on them, expectations ran high. At an early company class one well-seasoned regisseur remarked that this group of professional dancers might turn out to be one of the most talented dance companies ever assembled.