Expression "Make the brunt..."


I read this following line in Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown.(Page:23)

1-Last month, much to Langdon’s embarrassment, Boston Magazine had listed him as one of that city’s top ten most intriguing people-- a dubious honour that made him the brunt of endless ribbing by his Harvard colleagues.

BRUNT means force, doesn’t it? So what does it mean here? I think the common expression is bear the brunt of something.


Hi Tom,

Brunt is mainly a sharp blow or the target of an attack. It can be used literally as in someone experiencing the full impact of a crash if they are sitting in the front of a car or figuratively the target of a some campaign or verbal attack. If policies in a government are not working, the local member of parliament will bear the brunt of the criticism. In your example:

his colleagues are teasing him because of what was written in the article - they are making him the target of their ribbing (teasing).


Another possibility is that the writer misused brunt for butt:

butt (n) a victim of ridicule or pranks; 1. One that serves as an object of ridicule or contempt: I was the butt of their jokes.

Hi guys

I’d heard both “brunt of a joke” and “butt of a joke”. Google finds both, but “brunt of a joke” has far fewer results. What I found entertaining while I was googling: 18,900 results for “bare the brunt”. :lol: :shock: :lol: