Question: Where Does The Phrase Down To The Wire Come From?

What is the wire in military terms?

Term generally used to describe enemy action.

Inside/Outside The Wire: Describes whether you are on or off a base..

Why do we say for Pete’s sake?

“For Pete’s sake” originated as a substitute for “for Christ’s sake,” and other similar expressions. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, “for Pete’s sake” came into use more than a century ago and prompted similar sayings such as “for the love of Pete” in 1906 and “in the name of Pete” in 1942.

What does getting down to the wire mean?

To the last minute; to the very end. For example, We’re just about down to the wire with this project. This term comes from horseracing, where it was long the practice to stretch a wire across and above the track at the finish line.

What does the idiom under the wire mean?

under the wire. Barely, scarcely, just within the limit, as in This book will be finished just under the wire. This term comes from horse racing, where the wire marks the finish line. [First half of 1900s] Also see down to the wire.

What does get down to brass tacks mean?

The phrase get down to brass tacks (not brass tax) is an Americanism dating from the 19th century. In the idiom, brass tacks means (1) the essentials, or (2) the basic facts, so to get down to brass tacks is to focus on the essentials.

What does it mean to have an AXE to grind?

to have a strong personal opinion about something that you want people to accept and that is the reason why you do something: Environmentalists have no political axe to grind – they just want to save the planet. Continually thinking about.

What is the meaning of in the nick of time?

At the last moment, as in The police arrived in the nick of time, or He got there just in time for dinner. The first term began life as in the nick and dates from the 1500s, when nick meant “the critical moment” (a meaning now obsolete).

Where did kick the bucket come from?

A person standing on a pail or bucket with their head in a slip noose would kick the bucket so as to commit suicide. The OED, however, says this is mainly speculative; The OED describes as more plausible the archaic use of “bucket” as a beam from which a pig is hung by its feet prior to being slaughtered.

Why do we say 40 winks?

Related idiomatic sayings such as could not sleep a wink provide the mental picture of a wink being the shortest type of sleep available and “forty winks” therefore gives an indication of an appropriate short sleep.

Where did the phrase down to at come from?

The origins of this phrase are uncertain, but it has been observed in print since at least 1766, and likely was around well before that. The potentially related phrase “to a tittle” is found in a 1607 play, The Woman Hater by Francis Beaumont and John Fletcher (“I’ll quote him to a tittle”).

What does she can’t cut the mustard mean?

When you use the expression ‘Can’t Cut the Mustard’ you mean that someone is unable to succeed or meet expectations. Example of use: “I really like Jake, but he just can’t cut the mustard.”

What does under the radar mean?

not getting attention: not getting attention : unnoticed He tried to stay under the radar as he went about his business.

What does Bob’s your uncle Fanny’s your aunt mean?

My Aunt Fanny! There would appear to be an inconsistency in the expression “Bob’s your uncle and Fanny’s your aunt” if the above two meanings are applied, the first phrase meaning everything is fine, settled; the second that it is unbelievable, untrue.

What does buy a pig in a poke mean?

Relation to other idioms and expressions The English colloquialisms such as turn out to be a pig in a poke or buy a pig in a poke mean that something is sold or bought without the buyer knowing its true nature or value, especially when buying without inspecting the item beforehand.