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leave (one) to (someone's) tender mercies

To allow one to face the punishment or rebukes of another person who will not show them any mercy, kindness, or sympathy. The phrase is used ironically. I thought it would be best if I spoke to her, rather than leaving her to the principal's tender mercies. I don't have time to deal with this. I'll just leave them to Mrs. Tanner's tender mercies.
See also: leave, mercy, tender

at a tender age

In one's youth. I'm not surprised to hear that he was doing science experiments at a tender age—he's a child genius!
See also: age, tender

at the tender age of

This phrase is used to emphasize how young one was when one did something in particular. (The age is stated after "of.") I'm not surprised to hear that he was doing science experiments at the tender age of seven—he's a child genius!
See also: age, of, tender

tender age of

the young age of... She left home at the tender age of 17 and got married to a rock singer.
See also: age, of, tender

tender something for something

to offer something (of value) for something. The shareholders were asked to tender one of their shares for two of the offering company's. I decided not to tender my shares.
See also: tender

tender something (to someone) (for something)

to offer or present something to someone for something. Laura tendered payment to Gary for the tickets. Walter tendered the old shares to the company for new shares.

leave to someone's tender mercies

Submit to another's power or discretion, especially to an unsympathetic individual. Today this expression is always used ironically, as in We left him to the tender mercies of that stiff-necked, arrogant nurse. It alludes to a biblical passage (Proverbs 12:10): "A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast; but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel."
See also: leave, mercy, tender

tender age

A young age, as in It's a great advantage to learn languages at a tender age. [Early 1300s]
See also: age, tender

tender loving care

Also, TLC. Solicitous and compassionate care, as in These houseplants sure have had tender loving care, or Older house for sale, needs some renovation and TLC. Originally used to describe the work of care-givers such as nurses, this term today is often used ironically or euphemistically. [Second half of 1900s]
See also: care, loving, tender

at a ˌtender ˈage


at the tender ˌage of ˈ8, ˈ12, etc.

used in connection with somebody who is still young and does not have much experience: We were sent to boarding school at a tender age.At the tender age of seventeen I left home.
See also: age, tender
References in periodicals archive ?
At this time a decision will be made whether to progress the project further with the preferred tenderers or other potential suppliers.
The tenderer shall have an average annual turnover for the last five years of not less
case the tenderer performs its activity less than five years, the calculation is performed
The tenderer shall have appropriate permits to perform activities related to execution
If the tenderer dont have all necessary permits at the
The tenderer shall have the labour protection management system;
The tenderer shall have necessary professional knowledge and experience in
The tenderer shall demonstrate successful execution of at least one contract on similar
The tenderer shall not have consistent cases of court decisions against it (or any of the
The site visit is expected to be arranged for the tenderers during preparation of tenders,