at gunpoint

Idioms & Phrases

at gunpoint

Also, at knifepoint. Under coercion, as in I'm going to hold him at gunpoint for that raise he promised me last year. Both these phrases were at first used literally and later also figuratively. [Mid-1900s]

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