big stick


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big stick

n.
A display of power or a threat: a foreign policy that relied on the big stick.

big stick

n
informal force or the threat of using force
adj
(Military) of, or relating to, irresistible military strength

big′ stick′


n.
political or military force used as a threat.
[1895–1900]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.big stick - a display of force or powerbig stick - a display of force or power; "speak softly but carry a big stick"
display, show - something intended to communicate a particular impression; "made a display of strength"; "a show of impatience"; "a good show of looking interested"
References in classic literature ?
The evening of that day being one of the reading evenings at the Bower, Mr Boffin kissed Mrs Boffin after a five o'clock dinner, and trotted out, nursing his big stick in both arms, so that, as of old, it seemed to be whispering in his ear.
He sauntered along, wearing his hat a little on one side, with a light jaunty step, swinging his big stick, humming to himself, looking up from time to time at the houses and gardens on either side of him with superb, smiling patronage.
There stood the Miller with a lantern in one hand and a big stick in the other.
As the cocked hat would have been spoiled if left there, Sam very considerately flattened it down on the head of the gentleman in blue, and putting the big stick in his hand, propped him up against his own street-door, rang the bell, and walked quietly home.
After that, having acquired a taste for the water, I did a good deal of rafting in various suburban brickfields - an exercise providing more interest and excitement than might be imagined, especially when you are in the middle of the pond and the proprietor of the materials of which the raft is constructed suddenly appears on the bank, with a big stick in his hand.
How his grandfather, in the early days of the great war, when there was much distress and crime in the Vale, and the magistrates had been threatened by the mob, had ridden in with a big stick in his hand, and held the petty sessions by himself.
I would get a big stick, beat you black and blue, and then lock you up on bread and water for a week.
I had a big stick ready cut for to gib him deuced good beating when he did come - but Ise sich a fool dat I hadn't de heart arter all - he look so berry poorly.
When they brought me to James and told him I think he was very angry to see such big sticks.
If there is anything that is not to be tolerated on any terms, anything that is a type of Jack-in-office insolence and absurdity, anything that represents in coats, waistcoats, and big sticks our English holding on by nonsense after every one has found it out, it is a beadle.
Al-Jaafari stressed that the building of societies should be based on the basic tasks of culture, science and knowledge, not on the big stick, and that the civilization of Iraq, which has long roots in history, should inspire in all of us the pride of building and development as being a nation of civilization and glorious history.
Reidsville police did not say whether the robber wielded the big stick in a threatening way at anyone in the branch.