the world's premier FREE website for learners + teachers of English

lay down the law

This page is about the idiom lay down the law

Meaning: If you lay down the law, you tell people what they should do in a forceful and stern way.

For example:

  • After we lost our third game in a row, our coach got really angry and laid down the law and said we had to try harder or we'd be out the door.

  • Shelley's parents laid down the law after she got home late and grounded her for a month.

Quick Quiz:

If someone lays down the law, they tell people what they have to do in a

a. quiet and gentle way

b. funny and lively way

c. serious and stern way

Idiom of the Day

This entry is in the following categories:

Contributor: Matt Errey