ruffle someone's feathers

Idioms & Phrases

ruffle someone's feathers

Annoy or offend someone, as in Calling him a tightwad really ruffled his feathers. This term alludes to the stiffened, upright feathers of an angry bird. [Mid-1800s]

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