under someone's thumb

Definition of under someone's thumb

:under someone's control or influence
  • He kept the employees under his thumb.

Word by Word Definitions

under play
  1. : in or into a position below or beneath something

  2. : below or short of some quantity, level, or limit

  3. : in or into a condition of subjection, subordination, or unconsciousness

  1. : below or beneath so as to be overhung, surmounted, covered, protected, or concealed by

  2. : subject to the authority, control, guidance, or instruction of

  3. : receiving or undergoing the action or effect of

  1. : lying or placed below, beneath, or on the ventral side

  2. : facing or protruding downward

  3. : lower in rank or authority : subordinate

someone play
  1. : some person : somebody

thumb play
  1. : the short thick digit of the human hand that is analogous in position to the big toe and differs from the other fingers in having only two phalanges, allowing greater freedom of movement, and being opposable to each of them

  2. : the part of a glove or mitten that covers the thumb

  3. : a convex molding : ovolo

  1. : to turn over pages

  2. : to travel by thumbing rides : hitchhike

  3. : to request or obtain (a ride) in a passing automobile by signaling with the thumb


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