Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!
knock (one) sideways
1. To cause one to topple over as a result of a very forceful impact. The cyclist wasn't going very fast at all, but he still knocked me sideways when he ran into me. The child was standing at the edge of the beach when a large wave knocked her sideways.
2. To shock, surprise, astonish, or bewilder one, especially in a distressing or upsetting manner. I know the death of his mother really knocked Tom sideways. It knocked everyone in the company sideways when Olivia announced that she was leaving.
be knocked sideways
To be damaged or harmed, possibly beyond repair. Primarily heard in UK. Our economy has really been knocked sideways by the recession.
look sideways at (someone or something)
To view or regard something in a disapproving or distrustful manner. I can't understand why everyone in this club is looking sideways at me. Am I not wearing the right clothes? Some people look sideways at these institutions, but I believe they are beneficial to the public.
knock someone for a loop
1. Fig. to strike someone hard. You really knocked me for a loop. I hope that was an accident. DI was really knocked for a loop by the falling branch.
2. and throw someone for a loop Fig. to confuse or shock someone. (This is more severe and upsetting than throw someone a curve.) When Bill heard the news, it threw him for a loop. The manager knocked Bob for a loop by firing him on the spot.
knock for a loop
Also, throw for a loop; knock down or over with a feather ; knock sideways. Overcome with surprise or astonishment, as in The news of his death knocked me for a loop, or Being fired without any warning threw me for a loop, or Jane was knocked sideways when she found out she won. The first two of these hyperbolic colloquial usages, dating from the first half of the 1900s, allude to the comic-strip image of a person pushed hard enough to roll over in the shape of a loop. The third hyperbolic term, often put as You could have knocked me down with a feather, intimating that something so light as a feather could knock one down, dates from the early 1800s; the fourth was first recorded in 1925.
look sideways at
Glance at suspiciously or amorously, as in I'm sure the detective was looking sideways at me, and it made me very nervous, or They were looking sideways at each other, and I don't think it was innocent. [Mid-1800s] Also see look askance.
be knocked sidewaysBRITISH
If something is knocked sideways, it is severely damaged, and may not recover. Most of the country's trade unions have been knocked sideways in the past decade. Confidence in the British legal system has been knocked sideways. Compare with knock someone sideways.
knock someone sidewaysBRITISH
If something knocks you sideways, it makes you feel amazed, confused, or very upset. What knocks most visitors sideways is the sheer power and beauty of the place. Something like this, a huge shock, completely knocks you sideways. Compare with be knocked sideways.
knock someone sidewaysaffect someone very severely; make someone severely depressed or unable to cope. informal
1998 Penelope Lively Spiderweb It's always knocked me sideways—the thought of what we carry around, stashed away.