fly off the handle
to suddenly become angry
What is the origin of the idiom "fly off the handle" and when to use it?
The origin of the phrase "fly off the handle" can be traced back to the early 19th century. The phrase is believed to have derived from the image of a loose axe head flying off the wooden handle with great force when the handle is swung vigorously. This sudden and uncontrolled separation of the axe head from the handle serves as a metaphor for someone losing their temper explosively and unexpectedly. This idiom is commonly used to describe heated arguments, conflicts, or confrontations where emotions escalate rapidly and individuals lose their composure.