witch


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witch hunt

An attempt to blame and punish people who hold unpopular views and opinions, often under the guise of some other investigation. The ruling party's witch hunt against its detractors sparked a civil war.
See also: hunt, witch

*cold as a welldigger's ass (in January)

 and *cold as a welldigger's feet (in January); *cold as a witch's caress; *cold as marble; *cold as a witch's tit; *cold as a welldigger's ears (in January)
very, very cold; chilling. (Use caution with ass. *Also: as ~.) Bill: How's the weather where you are? Tom: Cold as a welldigger's ass in January. By the time I got in from the storm, I was as cold as a welldigger's feet. The car's heater broke, so it's as cold as a welldigger's ears to ride around in it. She gave me a look as cold as a witch's caress.
See also: ass, cold

witch hunt

a campaign directed against a person or group holding unorthodox or unpopular views.
The expression was inspired by the persecution in former times of people believed to be witches, often culminating in execution by burning.
See also: hunt, witch
References in classic literature ?
But now the old witch had through her caused the Hunter's eyes to become heavy.
The witch asked, 'Countryman, who are you, and what is your business?
When the old witch heard of the fine salad she wanted to eat it, and said, 'Dear countryman, just let me taste the wonderful salad.
The witch suspected no evil, and her mouth watered to taste the new dish, so that she went into the kitchen to prepare it herself.
Nevertheless, as we must carefully hold in remembrance, Mother Rigby was a witch of singular power and dexterity; and, keeping this fact duly before our minds, we shall see nothing beyond credibility in the remarkable incidents of our story.
The old witch clapped her skinny hands together, and smiled encouragingly upon her handiwork.
And then the witch beckoned to the scarecrow, throwing so much magnetic potency into her gesture that it seemed as if it must inevitably be obeyed, like the mystic call of the loadstone when it summons the iron.
At last the old witch clinched her fist and shook it at the figure.
They are the people who live in this land of the East where the Wicked Witch ruled.
When they saw the Witch of the East was dead the Munchkins sent a swift messenger to me, and I came at once.
I am not as powerful as the Wicked Witch was who ruled here, or I should have set the people free myself.
then she began to howl quite horribly, but Gretel ran away and the godless witch was miserably burnt to death.
The good people get happily married and all the bad people become good, even the wicked old witch, Mother Maudlin.
Nor was she satisfied with that; for a little time afterwards he lost a barrel of best-drink: for the old witch pulled out the spigot, and let it run all over the cellar, the very first evening he had tapped it to make merry with some of his neighbours.
The guide, and perhaps his horse too, were both so attentive to this discourse, that, either through want of care, or by the malice of the witch, they were now both sprawling in the dirt.