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Pain in the neck

Also, pain in the ass or butt. A source of annoyance, a nuisance, as in Joan is a real pain in the neck, with her constant complaining, or Jack told his brother to stop being a pain in the ass. The first of these colloquial expressions dates from about 1900 and originated as a euphemism for the two less polite variants.


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  • Painkiller

    [peyn-kil-er] /ˈpeɪnˌkɪl ər/ noun 1. a drug, treatment, or anything else that relieves , especially an analgesic. /ˈpeɪnˌkɪlə/ noun 1. an analgesic drug or agent 2. anything that relieves pain

  • Painless

    [peyn-lis] /ˈpeɪn lɪs/ adjective 1. without ; causing little or no : painless dentistry; a painless cure. 2. Informal. not difficult; requiring little or no hard work or exertion. adjective 1. not causing pain or distress 2. not affected by pain adj. 1560s, from pain (n.) + -less. Related: Painlessly; painlessness.

  • Pain perdu

    noun French toast Examples Pain perdu got its start as a way of using up leftover bread. Word Origin c. 1450, French, “lost bread” Usage Note cooking

  • Pain-pleasure principle

    pain-pleasure principle n. See pleasure principle.

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