Meaning of “the worm turns” in the English Dictionary

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"the worm turns" in British English

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the worm turns

used to describe when a person or group of people who have been treated badly for a long time suddenly become forceful and stop accepting a difficult situation:

It seems the worm has turned - after years of silence local people are beginning to protest about waste emissions from the factory.

(Definition of “the worm turns” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)