Against all odds

In spite of seeming very unlikely, as in Against all odds we had a snowstorm in early May, or Against all odds the slower team won. This transfer of a betting term to general usage occurred about 1900.


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  • Grain

    a small, hard seed, especially the seed of a food plant such as wheat, corn, rye, oats, rice, or millet. the gathered seed of food plants, especially of cereal plants. such plants collectively. any small, hard particle, as of sand, gold, pepper, or gunpowder. the smallest unit of weight in most systems, originally determined by […]

  • Against one’s better judgment

    Despite serious misgivings or objections, as in Against my better judgment, I told her to come whenever she pleased.

  • Against one’s will

    Without one’s consent, forcibly, as in The defendant knew he could not be made to testify against his will. Originally one meaning of will was “acquiescence” or “consent,” but this sense survives only in this idiom, which today nearly always implies some use of force. [ c. 1400 ]

  • Sun

    (often initial capital letter) the star that is the central body of the solar system, around which the planets revolve and from which they receive light and heat: its mean distance from the earth is about 93 million miles (150 million km), its diameter about 864,000 miles (1.4 million km), and its mass about 330,000 […]

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