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Before the wind

Driven ahead, hurried, as in The bikers are moving before the wind, so it’s hard to tell who will come in first. The literal meaning of this term is nautical, referring to a ship sailing in the same direction as the wind and being propelled forward. Its figurative use dates from the mid-1800s.


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  • Before you can say jack robinson

    Also, quicker than you can say Jack Robinson. Almost immediately, very soon, as in I’ll finish this book before you can say Jack Robinson. This expression originated in the 1700s, but the identity of Jack Robinson has been lost. Grose’s Classical Dictionary (1785) said he was a man who paid such brief visits to acquaintances […]

  • Before you know it

    see under before you can say Jack Robinson

  • Before-hand

    in anticipation; in advance; ahead of time: We should have made reservations beforehand. I hope to be beforehand with my report. Historical Examples I didn’t mean to let any one see it before-hand, but you are a dear old thing, and you shall. The Green Satin Gown Laura E. Richards He shows all to Forster […]

  • Beforementioned

    adjective already or previously mentioned; aforementioned Historical Examples The slaves are taken, as beforementioned, from cotton and tobacco, and are furnished by the Southern States. The American Quarterly Review, No. 17, March 1831 Various Their sea voyage terminated as beforementioned, on the 8th of August, by their actually entering that river. The Mirror of Literature, […]

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