on edge

Idioms & Phrases

on edge

Tense, nervous, irritable, as in We were all on edge as we waited for the surgeon's report. This expression transfers the edge of a cutting instrument to one's feelings. [Late 1800s] Also see on the edge; set one's teeth on edge.

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