What does it mean to get a bead on something?

What does to get a bead on mean?

In American English when you focus narrowly on something or define it carefully you “get a bead” or “draw a bead” on it. In this expression the term “bead” comes from the former name for the little metal bump on the end of a gun barrel which helped the shooter aim precisely at a target.

Can’t get a bead on meaning?

The ‘bead’ in the phrase ‘get a bead on’ is referring to the bead on the end of a gun with bead iron sights. Literally speaking, if you have a bead on someone, then your gun is aimed at them. Figuratively speaking, this means you know exactly where they are, or what they are doing.

Where does get a bead on come from?

To take careful verbal aim at a person. An Americanism dating from about 1830, the term comes from aiming a revolver or rifle, on which the “bead” was a small knob on the foresight. It was being used figuratively by about 1930.

What does a good bead mean?

To have a good bead on thus means, figuratively, to have a good, clear shot lined up. It suggests the people so described see the target clearly and have command of the situation. All that remains for them to do is pull the trigger.

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What does it mean to get a beat on someone?

(beat on someone) to hurt someone by hitting them a lot of times. According to the witness, the police ran up and started beating on him. Synonyms and related words.

What is zeroed in?

1 : to direct all of one’s attention to (someone or something) Scientists are hoping to zero in on a cure. 2 : to aim something (such as a gun or camera) directly at (someone or something) The gunner zeroed in on the target.

Is it beat or bead?

In American English when you focus narrowly on something or define it carefully you “get a bead” or “draw a bead” on it. … “Beat” is often mistakenly substituted for “bead” by people who imagine that the expression has something to do with matching the timing of the person or activity being observed, catching up with it.

Have a good bead on things meaning?

To thoroughly understand, appreciate, or comprehend someone or something. The team just has to get a bead on the severity of the cyber attack before we can implement any meaningful fixes. I couldn’t understand him at first, but I’m finally starting to get a bead on my sister’s boyfriend.

What is the meaning of the idiom to play to the gallery?

: to do things that one thinks will be popular among many people instead of doing what one thinks is right a governor who refuses to play to the gallery.