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Look daggers at

Posted by ESC on September 03, 2004

In Reply to: Games without frontiers posted by Warthog on September 03, 2004

: : : what does"if looks could kill"mean?

: : It means that when someone gives you a hostile glare, it's such an extreme expression that if it was possible for a look to kill you, then this one would.

: : There's a similar expression, "He looked (or glared) daggers at me."

: "If looks could kill, they probably will..."
: thank you Peter Gabriel.

: 'Sarcasm' is to make a remark intending to wound, so a 'pointed' remark follows that train of thought - it is 'pointed' in the sense of being incisive/sharp and with the capacity to offend.

I figure "if looks could kill" is a direct descendent of this phrase:

LOOK DAGGERS AT -- "Regard angrily; show one's displeasure silently. It is a splendid image for the glare; the sharp points of annoyance emanating from the eyes. The image was put vividly by Philip Massinger and Thomas Dekker in 'The Virgin Martir,' a play they published in 1622: 'Thine eyes shoot daggers at that man.'" From "Dictionary of Cliches" by James Rogers (Wings Books, Originally New York: Facts on File Publications, 1985).