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spike (one's) guns

To ruin one's plans or prevent one's success. The phrase refers to the former military practice of inserting spikes into enemy guns to prevent them from firing. I'm afraid the rain has spiked our guns. We cannot hold the rally as planned.
See also: gun, spike

spike someone's guns

If you spike someone's guns, you do something to prevent someone's plans from succeeding. Parkers spiked their rival's guns by launching their product two months before Jones were able to do so. Note: In the past, when soldiers captured a large enemy gun which they could not move, they hammered a nail or spike into the hole where the gunpowder was put. This meant that the gunpowder could not be lit and so the gun would not work.
See also: gun, spike

spike someone's guns

take steps to thwart someone's intended course of action.
First recorded in English in the late 17th century, the expression referred literally to the practice of hammering a metal spike into a captured enemy cannon so that it could not be fired.
See also: gun, spike

spike somebody’s ˈdrink

add (more) alcohol or drugs to somebody’s drink, without their knowledge: ...I discovered later that they’d spiked my drink. That’s why I was so ill!
See also: drink, spike

spike somebody’s ˈguns

(British English) spoil somebody’s plans because you do not want them to succeed: She was jealous of David’s progress in the company, so she spiked his guns by telling the boss that David had a drinking problem.This refers to pushing a metal spike (= a thin object with a sharp point) into the enemy’s gun or cannon so that it cannot be fired.
See also: gun, spike


1. n. a hypodermic needle; a hypodermic syringe and needle; a medicine dropper and a needle. (Drugs.) The addict caught some strange disease from a dirty spike.
2. tv. to add ether or alcohol to beer, originally by injecting it through the cork with a hypodermic needle; to add alcohol to a nonalcoholic drink. (see also spiked.) He spiked the beer with ether, which is a dangerous thing to do.
3. tv. to puncture an idea. I explained the plan, but the boss spiked it immediately.


1. mod. having to do with a drink with alcohol added; having to do with a punch with an alcoholic content. Is the punch spiked? I want some without.
2. mod. alcohol or drug intoxicated. I knew that Mrs. Wilmington-Thorpe was spiked when she belched like a real country thunder-boomer.
3. mod. having to do with hair that stands up straight. His spiked hair wouldn’t look so bad if it wasn’t orange.
See also: spike
References in periodicals archive ?
As in the "Repeat Hitting" drill, the coach tosses a perfect set to the spiker, and the spiker alternates hitting from Area 1 ("Down the Line") and Area 2 ("Cross-Court").
For example, a cab company with a fleet of at least 215 cars will file anywhere from 25 to 30 claims a month that range between $1,000 and $3,000, Spiker said.
KABUL(PAN): Afghanistan's women spikers on Thursday left for Tajikistan to play friendly matches on their first-ever trip to the neighbouring country, officials said.
Imagine the potential for savings if Americans are able to move not only the savings accumulated in their HSAs, but also customized, affordable health benefits that best suit their unique needs," said Spiker.
Spiker said his firm's sister company, Discovery Health, has been offering consumer-directed health plans for some 12 years to more than 1.
A group of independent, owner-operator taxi companies, represented by lobbyist Ken Spiker Jr.
Spiker, a "Catholics for Ron Paul" national advisory board member, a Republican Party of Iowa Central Committee member, and Vice Chairman of the Ron Paul presidential campaign in Iowa.
THI QAR/ Aswat al-Iraq: Demonstrators of Spiker victims' relatives demonstrated today cutting off the international route, demanding knowing the fate of their sons and to be handed their dead bodies.
In addition, Spiker observed, "Destiny Health's increasing presence in the U.
Jerry Pentoja, a center, Travis Reed, Brandon Mote, Matt Olson, and guards Izzy Sandoval and Ryan Spiker round out the rotation.
We at First Command are keenly aware of the serious impact even a short-term default could have on the fiscal health of our military and federal clients," said Scott Spiker, CEO of First Command.
Mohammed Ali was named the best player, Adel Al Khayyat won the best playmaker award, the best spiker trophy went to Mohammed Al Thawadi, while Faisal Mohammed took the best server prize.
5 /PRNewswire/ -- With open benefits enrollment either around the corner or currently underway at many American companies, two executives from Destiny Health -- CEO Scott Spiker and Vice President Stuart Slutzky -- are available to discuss consumer-directed health plans as a smart option for employers of all sizes.
Shortly thereafter, Mitchell and Manning went outside and a confrontation ensued between them and the two patrons, identified in court records as Bryan Herbert and Seth Spiker.