look someone in the face

Idioms & Phrases

look someone in the face

Also, look someone in the eye. Face someone directly and forthrightly. These expressions imply honestyor at least the appearance of honestyin what is said, as in Can you look me in the face and tell me you don't want that prize? or John looked me in the eye and told me he didn't break the window. The first term was first recorded in 1566, the variant in 1931. Also see stare in the face.

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