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"Beat the shit out of somebody"

Posted by Smokey Stover on March 27, 2005

In Reply to: "Beat the shit out of somebody" posted by Bruce Kahl on March 22, 2005

: : hello,I am from HK.
: : Recently ,I' ve heard my friend using such phrase,I'd like to know what does it mean?Does it mean literally?

: It means that somebody is gonna get a really good beating, one that will hurt him immensely.
: And if that beating results in a death then, yes, the excrement built up in his system just may work its way outside the body.

Don't take Bruce Kahl too literally on this one. The "shit" part is just an intensifier, no more literally intended than "Beat the hell out of him." It is, or used to be, more dramatic-sounding than "Beat him severely." The figurative use of language can be very cliche-ridden at times. SS