bang to rights

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Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From reinterpretation of bang ‎(completely) + to rights ‎(properly).


bang to rights

  1. (Britain) Used other than as an idiom: bang (adverb), to rights.
    • 2004, Brian S. McWilliams, Spam Kings, O’Reilly Media (2005), ISBN 978-0-596-00732-4, page 69:
      Once, after a spammer trolled Nanae, accusing antis of having no life, Mad Pierre sarcastically responded that the spammer was correct. ¶ “Damn, you’ve got us bang to rights. We have no lives. None. At all.”
    • 2007, Neil Pearson, Obelisk: A History of Jack Kahane and the Obelisk Press, page 479:
      Tyler tries to dismiss Vidal's characterization of him as a pseudo-intellectual buffoon, but succeeds only in demonstrating that Vidal had him bang to rights.
    • 2008, James Buchan, The gate of air:
      He wished he were in London, where a girl in a minicab would set him bang to rights.
  2. (Britain, idiomatic) Red-handed.

Etymology 2[edit]

From reinterpretation of bang ‎(completely) as bang ‎(to handle noisily or violently)


bang to rights

  1. (rare, Britain, idiomatic) To have sufficient, indisputable evidence that a person's actions are generally perceived to be wrong; to catch red-handed.
    • 2007 May 26, The Week, 615, 6:
      Good week for: Cyclists, after Britain's most prolific bicycle thief was banged to rights.
    • 2009 February 4, “Batman turns air blue in Terminator tantrum”, Belfast Telegraph:
      His alter-ego Batman utters nothing more provocative than the occasional “holy smoke” as he bangs adversaries to rights
    • 2010, Peter James, Dead Simple:
      He'd been untouchable for the past decade, but now Roy Grace had finally banged him to rights.
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Particularly: “bangs/banging/banged to rights?”