To give no quarter means to show no mercy, to award no clemency. To give no quarter originally applied to military situations. If a victor was not willing to take care of prisoners he would warn that he would give no quarter. To house and feed a prisoner one would give them quarters are quarter them, so to refuse to quartermen who surrendered meant that they would be put to death. A red flag was sometimes raised to signal the intent to give no quarter, presumably because red is the color of blood. It became illegal to grant no quarterwith the Hague Convention of 1907. Eventually, give no quarter took on a figurative meaning of showing no mercy, usually applied in negotiation situations. Related phrases are gives no quarter, gave no quarter, giving no quarter.

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