in seaman phrase, means that the vessel at anchor is swung about by the force of the tide. Metaphorically, a person is tide-rode when circumstances over which he has no control are against him, especially a sudden glut in the market. Tide-rode, ridden at anchor with the head to the tide; wind-rode, with the head to the wind.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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