lick into shape

[ lik ]SEE DEFINITION OF lick into shape

WORD ORIGIN

"to beat," 1535, perhaps from figurative use of lick (v.1) in the Coverdale bible that year in sense of "defeat, annihilate" (an enemy's forces) in Num. xxii:4:

But to lick (of) the whip "taste punishment" is attested from mid-15c.

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