Get a toehold

verb phrase

To get or have a precarious grip on something; get or have an uncertain command: You’ve got a good toehold on the job; now let’s see you take over

[1940s+; fr the sort of unsure footing one has when only the toes are planted and the precarious seizure one has made when only the toe of the quarry is in one’s grip]


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  • Get back at

    Take revenge on, as in Watch out for Peter; he’s sure to get back at you. Similarly, get one’s own back means simply “get revenge,” as in She finally saw a chance to get her own back. The first expression dates from the late 1800s, the second from the early 1900s.

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