stay (one's) hand

(redirected from stay their hand)

stay (one's) hand

To stop or prevent someone or oneself from doing something. The board was prepared to fire him over the offense, but they stayed their hand and opted to suspend him from his role instead. See if you can stay her hand before she signs the deal.
See also: hand, stay
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

stay someone's hand

restrain someone from acting.
See also: hand, stay
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

stay your/somebody’s ˈhand

(old-fashioned or literary) stop yourself/somebody from doing something; prevent somebody from doing something: He reached for his keys, but Rosa stayed his hand.
See also: hand, stay
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
"While firmer growth could ostensibly stay their hand, the revealed reaction function of the BSP appears more driven by inflation, as was the case in 2012 and 2013."
"I urge all those bodies responsible for walk-in centres to stay their hand on closures at least until the A&E crisis subsides, assuming it does.
Whilst there might be no legal obligations on Her Majesty's Government for compensation, there could be a moral one." The government should, he concluded, stay their hand while they waited to see how events turned out on the battlefield.
He alloweth the Persians to get the nuclear weapon (unless He hath something up His sleeve), for He knoweth that when they behold Him they will stay their hand, and not burn the Israelites unto a cinder, as they pronounce.
I've always felt that Mary and Joseph must have been tempted to give him a clip round the ear for his cheek, though knowing their son was divine may have caused them to stay their hand. But hearing the story again reminded me how quickly we parents change from anxiety to relief: relief is immediately succeeded by anger and an irresistible instinct to tell the errant child off, whoever was to blame.
"But with Ovo Energy having increased its prices, suppliers will be uncertain and this could stay their hand.
There is nothing to stay their hand. There is nothing to stop a punch-up turning into a killing, a sexual assault degenerating into murder, a botched robbery transforming into the killing of a young policewoman with five children.
On grounds of good taste alone, Doug Ellis' most persistent critics should stay their hand this summer as he strives to restore his health.
In other words, when the resolution of the application is a close call, the courts should stay their hand and sustain the judgment of the zoning board.
Other hopefuls seem to be prepared to stay their hand until after the next Holyrood elections in 2003.
However, inflation has become more of an issue here and, with our Monetary Policy Committee having to deal with a very explicit inflation target, it would be unwise to expect them to stay their hand indefinitely.
Bosses and unions appealed to Bank chiefs to stay their hand.