throw the first stone(redirected from they threw the first stone)
throw the first stone
To be the first person to criticize someone or something. Derived from a quote in the Bible (John 8:7): "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone." OK, fine, I'll throw the first stone—that movie was awful! Alicia had thrown the first stone, but of course the boss only heard me complaining about him. People love to vilify these celebrities the moment they do or say something wrong. But let he that is without sin cast the first stone, that's what I say.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
cast/throw the first stone, to
To be quick to attack someone or something. The term comes from Jesus’ defense of an adulteress against vindictive Pharisees and scribes, who quoted the law of Moses and said she must be stoned. Jesus told them, “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her” (Gospel of St. John, 8:7). The implication that the attacker is equally vulnerable was continued in the modern-day cliché, and spelled out even more in the old proverb, people who live in glass houses should not throw stones.
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer