throw the book at


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Related to throw the book at: throw the book at someone

throw the book at (one)

1. To apply all possible criminal charges to a lawbreaker; to impose the maximum possible punishment or jail sentence against a convicted criminal. After his third offense, the judge threw the book at the criminal, making parole all but an impossibility.
2. To punish or reprimand someone as severely as possible. The disciplinary board threw the book at him for the derogatory tirade he leveled at his employees.
See also: book, throw
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

throw the book at someone

Fig. to charge or convict someone with as many crimes as is possible. I made the police officer angry, so he took me to the station and threw the book at me. The judge threatened to throw the book at me if I didn't stop insulting the police officer.
See also: book, throw
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

throw the book at

Punish or reprimand severely, as in I just knew the professor would throw the book at me for being late with my paper. This expression originally meant "sentence a convicted person to the maximum penalties allowed," the book being the roster of applicable laws. Its figurative use dates from the mid-1900s.
See also: book, throw
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

throw the book at

charge or punish someone as severely as possible or permitted. informal
See also: book, throw
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

throw the book at

1. To make all possible charges against (a lawbreaker, for example).
2. To reprimand or punish severely.
See also: book, throw
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

throw the book at, to

To scold or punish severely. The term comes from a legal one meaning to sentence an offender to the maximum penalties allowed, the book meaning the entire roster of laws and penalties applicable to the particular crime. The legal metaphor was in use in the early twentieth century, and by the middle of the century it was broadened to include reproaches and nonlegal remedies. Joseph Heller’s wonderful satire on military mores, Catch- 22 (1961), stated, “He was formally charged with breaking ranks while in formation, felonious assault, indiscriminate behavior, mopery, high treason, provoking . . . In short, they threw the book at him.”
See also: book, throw
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
If they tried to cash in by cheating kids out of a once-in-a-lifetime experience, the Royal Mail should throw the book at them.
Rooney (above) is one of the best players in the world and it re-ignites the argument that if we are to throw the book at one of the big boys when they do it, then maybe everyone else will stop.
It is time that the courts took heed of public opinion and throw the book at him.
Australia lawyers are planning to throw the book at the pair - that rat could have been one of their colleagues.
UEFA are now rightly going to throw the book at Inter Milan for their fans appalling behaviour.
HEARTS chairman George Foulkes has warned the SFA will be made to look a 'laughing stock' if they throw the book at his club.
UEFA are ready to throw the book at Didier Drogba - it's 4-9 he'll need lengthy treatment.
Now they want the SFA to throw the book at the Pars chairman.
Paul Jackson, Mr Lloyd's cousin, said: "He wanted to throw the book at them."
Now his bosses should throw the book at him after all, that's what he would do if it was one of us.
TONY Blair came under pressure to throw the book at Geoffrey Robinson last night after he was found guilty of misleading MPs.
McMurdo said: "I'm going to write to the SFA and FIFA to have this matter investigated and if he's breaking the rules then they should throw the book at him."
No doubt they will try and buy their way out of this problem but if the police have evidence that items were taken they should throw the book at them.