revenge (oneself) (up)on (someone or something)

(redirected from revenge themselves upon)

revenge (oneself) (up)on (someone or something)

To retaliate against another for a wrong done to oneself; to seek or exact revenge against someone. Tiffany is always gossiping about me, so I revenged myself on her by starting a nasty rumor about her relationship with one of our teachers. I see the growth of this extremist movement as largely being citizens revenging themselves upon the established government, which they feel has betrayed or abandoned them.
See also: revenge

revenge oneself (up)on someone or something

to retaliate against someone or something. (Upon is formal and less commonly used than on.) There is no need for you to revenge yourself upon Walter. It was an accident. She did not know how she would revenge herself on Joe, but she knew she would.
See also: on, revenge
References in classic literature ?
In the coarse familiarity of their approach, and the effrontery of their inquisitiveness (which they are in great haste to assert, as if they panted to revenge themselves upon the decent old restraints of home), they surpass any native specimens that came within my range of observation: and I often grew so patriotic when I saw and heard them, that I would cheerfully have submitted to a reasonable fine, if I could have given any other country in the whole world, the honour of claiming them for its children.
Yet if thwarted, they may easily allow their failure to embitter their whole lives or they may revenge themselves upon the opposite sex by becoming cynically promiscuous.
The Duchesses's two brothers, who revenge themselves upon her for what they see as a betrayal of family codes of social supremacy (the girl has married beneath herself), are marginally less satisfying than Ms McTeer.