throw down the gauntlet

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throw down the gauntlet

To issue a challenge or invitation, as to a fight, argument, or competition. When the heavyweight champion boasted that nobody could beat him, no one expected this newcomer to throw down the gauntlet. Someone finally threw down the gauntlet to the boss regarding the oppressive working conditions in the office. We'll never make any progress on this issue if we don't have members of congress willing to throw down the gauntlet.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw

throw down the gauntlet

Fig. to challenge someone to an argument or to (figurative) combat. When Bob chal— lenged my conclusions, he threw down the gauntlet. I was ready for an argument. Frowning at Bob is the same as throwing down the gauntlet. He loves to get into a fight about something.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw

throw down the gauntlet

Declare or issue a challenge, as in The senator threw down the gauntlet on the abortion issue. This expression alludes to the medieval practice of a knight throwing down his gauntlet, or metal glove, as a challenge to combat. Its figurative use dates from the second half of the 1700s, as does the less frequently heard take up the gauntlet, for accepting a challenge.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw

throw down the gauntlet

COMMON If you throw down the gauntlet, you do or say something that challenges someone to take action or to compete against you. Note: Gauntlets are long thick gloves which protect your hands, wrists, and forearms. The largest teaching union yesterday threw down the gauntlet to the Government, threatening strikes if their demands are not met. Note: The verbs lay down and fling down are sometimes used instead of throw down. He has laid down the gauntlet and presented us with two options which appear to be non-negotiable. Note: In medieval times, a knight would throw one of his gauntlets (= long gloves) to the ground as a challenge to another knight to fight. If the second knight picked it up, he accepted the challenge.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw

throw down (or take up) the gauntlet

issue (or accept) a challenge.
In medieval times, a person issued a challenge by throwing their gauntlet (i.e. glove) to the ground; whoever picked it up was deemed to have accepted the challenge.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw

throw down the ˈgauntlet

invite somebody to compete with you; challenge somebody: They have thrown down the gauntlet to the Prime Minister by demanding a referendum. OPPOSITE: hold out/offer an olive branch (to somebody)A gauntlet is a kind of glove. In medieval times a knight threw his gauntlet at the feet of another knight as a challenge to fight. If he accepted the challenge, the other knight would pick up the glove.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw

throw down the gauntlet

Issue a challenge. In the Middle Ages a gauntlet was the glove in a suit of armor. Throwing down his gauntlet was a knight's way to challenge an opponent to combat.
See also: down, gauntlet, throw
References in periodicals archive ?
GRAEME McDOWELL says he has the bottle to win a second major after throwing down the gauntlet to Open leader Adam Scott.
Hutton added: 'We are throwing down the gauntlet to the industry.
Fred - perhaps with Chelsea's Russian owner Roman Abramovich in mind - said: "I'm throwing down the gauntlet to anyone worldwide.
Caerphilly could not stop Neath from throwing down the gauntlet to Welsh Premier leaders Newport at the Gnoll last night.
Nokia set out ambitious goals for its new combined cellphone and game console, throwing down the gauntlet on the eve of a worldwide launch as it seeks to wrest control of the market from Nintendo.
Throwing down the gauntlet once again, SNL also announced today that 13 thrift equity analysts have signed on to compete in the 2003 contest.
Throwing down the gauntlet to Duncan Smith, he declared: "We believe in the first, what on earth does he believe in?
So it comes down to leadership,'' Livingston said gently in formally throwing down the gauntlet, sounding as taciturn as an anti-hero in a black-and-white Western.