To take to the heels
Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h["a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of the foot; sometimes, the whole foot; -- in man or quadrupeds. [1913 Webster]

He [the stag] calls to mind his strength and then his speed, His winged heels and then his armed head. --Denham. [1913 Webster]

2. The hinder part of any covering for the foot, as of a shoe, sock, etc.; specif., a solid part projecting downward from the hinder part of the sole of a boot or shoe. [1913 Webster]

3. The latter or remaining part of anything; the closing or concluding part. ``The heel of a hunt.'' --A. Trollope. ``The heel of the white loaf.'' --Sir W. Scott. [1913 Webster]

4. Anything regarded as like a human heel in shape; a protuberance; a knob. [1913 Webster]

5. The part of a thing corresponding in position to the human heel; the lower part, or part on which a thing rests; especially: (a) (Naut.) The after end of a ship's keel. (b) (Naut.) The lower end of a mast, a boom, the bowsprit, the sternpost, etc. (c) (Mil.) In a small arm, the corner of the but which is upwards in the firing position. (d) (Mil.) The uppermost part of the blade of a sword, next to the hilt. (e) The part of any tool next the tang or handle; as, the heel of a scythe. [1913 Webster]

6. (Man.) Management by the heel, especially the spurred heel; as, the horse understands the heel well. [1913 Webster]

7. (Arch.) (a) The lower end of a timber in a frame, as a post or rafter. In the United States, specif., the obtuse angle of the lower end of a rafter set sloping. (b) A cyma reversa; -- so called by workmen. --Gwilt. [1913 Webster]

8. (Golf) The part of the face of the club head nearest the shaft. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

9. In a carding machine, the part of a flat nearest the cylinder. [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

{Heel chain} (Naut.), a chain passing from the bowsprit cap around the heel of the jib boom.

{Heel plate}, the butt plate of a gun.

{Heel of a rafter}. (Arch.) See {Heel}, n., 7.

{Heel ring}, a ring for fastening a scythe blade to the snath.

{Neck and heels}, the whole body. (Colloq.)

{To be at the heels of}, to pursue closely; to follow hard; as, hungry want is at my heels. --Otway.

{To be down at the heel}, to be slovenly or in a poor plight.

{To be out at the heels}, to have on stockings that are worn out; hence, to be shabby, or in a poor plight. --Shak.

{To cool the heels}. See under {Cool}.

{To go heels over head}, to turn over so as to bring the heels uppermost; hence, to move in a inconsiderate, or rash, manner.

{To have the heels of}, to outrun.

{To lay by the heels}, to fetter; to shackle; to imprison. --Shak. --Addison.

{To show the heels}, to flee; to run from.

{To take to the heels}, to flee; to betake to flight.

{To throw up another's heels}, to trip him. --Bunyan.

{To tread upon one's heels}, to follow closely. --Shak. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • To lay by the heels — Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h[ a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To be at the heels of — Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h[ a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To be out at the heels — Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h[ a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To cool the heels — Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h[ a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To have the heels of — Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h[ a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • To show the heels — Heel Heel, n. [OE. hele, heele, AS. h[=e]la, perh. for h[=o]hila, fr. AS. h[=o]h heel (cf. {Hough}); but cf. D. hiel, OFries. heila, h[=e]la, Icel. h[ae]ll, Dan. h[ae]l, Sw. h[ a]l, and L. calx. [root]12. Cf. {Inculcate}.] 1. The hinder part of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • take to one's heels — also[show a clean pair of heels] {v. phr.} To begin to run or run away. * /When he heard the police coming, the thief took to his heels./ …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • take to one's heels — also[show a clean pair of heels] {v. phr.} To begin to run or run away. * /When he heard the police coming, the thief took to his heels./ …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • take to your heels — mainly literary phrase to run away from someone, especially because you have done something wrong Thesaurus: to escape from a place or situationsynonym to runsynonym Main entry: heel * * * take to your heels : to begin to run away …   Useful english dictionary

  • take\ to\ one's\ heels — • take to one s heels • show a clean pair of heels v. phr. To begin to run or run away. When he heard the police coming, the thief took to his heels …   Словарь американских идиом

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