get the better of
- (transitive, idiomatic) To overwhelm or overcome
1859, George Eliot, chapter 28, in Adam Bede:
- Adam said, "My temper got the better of me, and I said things as wasn't true."
1922 February, James Joyce, Ulysses, Paris: Shakespeare & Co.; Sylvia Beach, OCLC 560090630; republished London: Published for the Egoist Press, London by John Rodker, Paris, October 1922, OCLC 2297483:Episode 16
- Though this sort of thing went on every other night or very near it still Stephen's feelings got the better of him in a sense though he knew that Corley's brandnew rigmarole on a par with the others was hardly deserving of much credence.
- 2005, Eric Pfanner, "With Characteristic Fortitude, Britons Carry On," New York Times, 8 Jul. (retrieved 2 Sep. 2008),
- Many people returned to work a bit anxious, they acknowledged, but grimly determined not to let terrorists get the better of them.
- (transitive, idiomatic) To trick or con.
- (transitive, idiomatic) To gain an advantage over.
- He got the better of him early in the match, but finished by losing.
- (gain an advantage): have the better of