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fall on one's face

Slang definitions & phrases for fall on one's face

fall on one's face

verb phrase

(also fall flat on one's face) To make an embarrassing mistake, failed attempt, catastrophic decline, etc; FALL ON one's ASS: Trying to be stately, I fell flat on my face/ If the dollar was stumbling, the Japanese stock market was falling on its face (1970s+)


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with fall on one's face

fall on one's face

Also, fall flat on one's face. Make a blunder or error of judgment, as in Holly fell on her face whenever she forecast earnings, or That weatherman keeps falling flat on his face with his predictions. This term, first recorded in 1614, originally had the literal meaning of “prostrate oneself in reverence.” The present colloquial usage, however, transfers a physical fall to various kinds of bungling.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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