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ruffle someone's feathers

Meaning: If you ruffle someone's feathers, you do something to upset or annoy them.

For example:

  • I didn't mean to ruffle Gillian's feathers. I just asked her if she could return the books she'd borrowed.

  • The interviewer ruffled the president's feathers when she asked the same question again after he'd tried to avoid answering it.

Quick Quiz:

Sandra ruffled Russel's feathers by saying
  1. he was a good listener
  2. he was easy to talk to
  3. he didn't understand women

Discuss: ruffle someone's feathers

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