give someone his or her head

Idioms & Phrases

give someone his or her head

Also, let someone have his or her head. Allow someone to proceed as he or she wishes, give someone freedom. For example, He usually gave his assistant his head when it came to scheduling appointments, or Sometimes it's wise for parents to let a teenager have his head. This expression alludes to loosening a horse's reins and letting it go where it wants to. [Second half of 1500s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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