Complete Definition of "hairsbreadth"

English

Alternative forms
hairbreadth
hair's breadth

Etymology
hair's + breadth

Pronunciation
(Canada): IPA|/ËhÉrzbrÉdθ/, SAMPA|/"hErzbrEdT/
(UK): IPA|/ËhÉÉrzbrÉdθ/, SAMPA|/"[email protected]/

Noun
en-noun

#a very short distance or a very small amount (as is the width of a hair)
#*1597, William Shakespeare, The Merry Wives of Windsor (Act IV, Scene 2)
#*:I see you are obsequious in your love, and I profess requital to a hair's breadth;
#*1857, Charles Dickens, Little Dorrit
#*:... it was characteristic of this man, as it is of all men similarly marked, that whatever he did, he overdid, though it were sometimes by only a hairsbreadth...
#*1919, John Buchan, Mr. Standfast
#*:We've missed our shot by a hairsbreadth and that's the same as missing by miles.

Derived terms
to a hair's breadth

zh:hairsbreadth

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