rise to the bait

rise to the bait

To respond to someone's provoking actions or words in the way that they intended. Likened to a fish attempting to eat the bait on a hook. That's just what he wants you to do. Don't rise to the bait. The undercover officer changed the conversation to the recent burglary, hoping the thief would rise to the bait and confess. Promise John some free drinks, and he'll rise to the bait every time.
See also: bait, rise

rise to the bait

Fig. to respond to an allurement; to fall for an enticement or fall into a trap. (Alludes to a fish coming up from deep water to seize bait.) You can get him here easily. Tell him that there will be lots of food and he will rise to the bait. He rose to the bait and did just as he was expected to do.
See also: bait, rise

rise to the bait

Be tempted by or react to an enticement, as in We told him there'd be lots of single young women at the party, and he rose to the bait . Likening a fish rising to bait to human behavior dates from the late 1500s.
See also: bait, rise

rise to the bait

or

take the bait

If you rise to the bait or take the bait, you react to something that someone has said or done in exactly the way that they wanted you to react. Adrina tried to provoke me, but I refused to rise to the bait. Julia told him that she had fallen off a horse as a child and lost her confidence. Hewitt immediately took the bait, offering to teach her to ride. Note: In fly-fishing, the fish rise to the surface of the water to take the bait, and so they get caught.
See also: bait, rise

rise to the bait

react to a provocation or temptation exactly as intended.
The image here is of a fish coming to the surface to take a bait or fly.
1966 Listener I should perhaps apologise for having risen to the bait of Mr Wilkinson's provocative letter.
See also: bait, rise

rise to the ˈbait

act or react to something in exactly the way another person wants you to: I knew he was trying to get me angry, but I didn’t rise to the bait.
A fisherman uses bait to attract fish to his hook.
See also: bait, rise
References in periodicals archive ?
Don't rise to the bait - often people post something provocative to raise their profile.
But Commonwealth champion Taylor - looking to extended his perfect nine-fight winning streak as a pro, which includes eight KOs - refused to rise to the bait and sat with a wry grin as Davies rambled on.
I don't want to rise to the bait too much, but as a diehard rugby league fan, it would be remiss of me if I did not say the following: Rugby league is a game wholly based on skill, which has been its focus since its glorious foundation.
McCarthy (below) refused to rise to the bait, insisting his players can do the talking for him.
When asked what superhero he would most like to play, Cumberbatch, who has been rumored to play Doctor Strange in the recently announced Marvel movie, did not rise to the bait, saying: "Batman, I guess.
Mancini did not rise to the bait of criticism from former Arsenal and Germany goalkeeper Jens Lehmann, who said City play "very, very boring football" and "make their opponents fall asleep".
Morrell, whose table-topping side were 4-1 winners at Gateshead a fortnight ago, refused to rise to the bait, saying: "Luton scoring five against the league leaders is a statement of their intent, but we scored four at their place.
However, while Carrie Ford, who was riding Forest Gunner for her husband Richard, appeared to rise to the bait, she admits the apparent antagonism between the pair that culminated with McCain stating he would invite people to "kick his bare buttocks if Ford won the National" was simply aimed at producing headlines for the Aintree spectacular.
The Blues boosted promotion hopes with a 1-0 win at home to Southampton but big Eck refused to rise to the bait after Brady slammed his signing of ex-Hibs star Ulises de la Cruz.
Hough had threatened to "hurt" Maxwell who refused to rise to the bait and let his fists do the talking with a competent display of pugilism that could send Hough's career into an irretrievable downward spiral.
For a change, keep a low profile and try not to rise to the bait.
In the January 2005 issue, two readers rise to the bait.
They're just gaming the system, goading their critics to rise to the bait.