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Back to square one

back to square one

adverb phrase

Returned to the starting point, usually having wasted a great deal of effort; no farther ahead: Which means we’re basically back to square one

Related Terms

go back to square one

[1960s+ British; origin uncertain, perhaps fr one of various board games]


Read Also:

  • Back to the drawing board

    a rectangular board on which paper is placed or mounted for drawing or drafting. back to the drawing board, back to the original or an earlier stage of planning or development: Our plan didn’t work out, so it’s back to the drawing board. on the drawing board, in the planning or design stage: The shopping […]

  • Back to the salt mines

    back to the salt mines adverb phrase Returned to hard work and unremitting discomfort after a period of relative ease and pleasure: I had a week off, then back to the salt mines [1920s+; fr the tradition of Russian penal servitude in Siberian salt mines] Resume work, usually with some reluctance, as in With my […]

  • Back to the wall

    Also, back against the wall. In a hard-pressed situation; also, without any way of escape. For example, In the closing few minutes, our team had its back to the wall but continued to fight gallantly, or The bank has him with his back to the wall; he’ll have to pay up now. This term was […]

  • Backtrack

    to return over the same course or route. to withdraw from an undertaking, position, etc.; reverse a policy. Contemporary Examples “The amount of time you spend at the gym is not enough time to backtrack in your waist training,” she says. Waist Training: Can You Cinch Your Waist Thin? DailyBurn July 17, 2014 Almost immediately […]

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