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Back foot

on the back foot, at a disadvantage; outmanoeuvred or outclassed by an opponent
Contemporary Examples

Government forces, he says, are constantly on the back foot, rarely launching offensives to regain territory.
Iraqis Swear: Baghdad Airport is Safe From ISIS Susannah George October 12, 2014

Historical Examples

He pulled at his back foot like a man striving to loose himself from thick mud.
Before Egypt E. K. Jarvis

The great thing at first is to prevent the weight getting back on the back foot.
How To Ski and How Not To Vivian Caulfeild

A man never ascends or descends, nor walks at all in any direction, without raising the heel of the back foot.
A Treatise on Painting Leonardo Da Vinci


Read Also:

  • Back formation

    the analogical creation of one word from another word that appears to be a derived or inflected form of the first by dropping the apparent affix or by modification. a word so formed, as typewrite from typewriter. Historical Examples In any event, the men should be taught to take some form of a closed back […]

  • Back four

    noun (soccer) the defensive players in many modern team formations: usually two fullbacks and two centre backs

  • Backgammon

    a game for two persons played on a board having two tables or parts, each marked with 12 points, and with both players having 15 pieces that are moved in accordance with throws of the dice. a victory at this game, especially one resulting in a tripled score. to defeat at backgammon, especially to win […]

  • Back gear

    (in a lathe) one of several gears for driving the headstock at various speeds. Historical Examples Referring again to Fig. 494, g′ is the pinion to drive the back gear while g receives motion from the back-gear pinion. Modern Machine-Shop Practice, Volumes I and II Joshua Rose Various methods of moving the back gear into […]

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