Gordian


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cut the Gordian knot

To solve a very challenging or daunting problem decisively. The phrase likely alludes to Gordius, the king of Phrygia, who tied a knot that an oracle proclaimed would only be cut by the future ruler of Asia. Alexander the Great allegedly cut the Gordian knot in one blow. A: "Wait, Matt already solved that impossible equation?" B: "Yes! I have no idea how he did it, but he sure cut the Gordian knot."
See also: cut, Gordian, knot

Gordian knot

A complicated problem that can only be solved with creative or unorthodox thinking. In Greek and Roman mythology, King Gordian tied such a complex knot that only Alexander the Great was able to loosen it by cutting it with his sword. Trying to remove the gum from my daughter's hair turned into quite the Gordian knot. Ultimately, it was just easier to cut the tangled mess out of her hair. The coding problem looked like a Gordian knot until we realized we could bypass it altogether with a different approach.
See also: Gordian, knot

cut the Gordian knot

LITERARY
If someone cuts the Gordian knot, they deal with a difficult situation in a quick, forceful and effective way. Mr Sandler cut the Gordian knot that was strangling the market. Note: Verbs such as break, untie and untangle are sometimes used instead of cut. Which country should make the first move to untie the Gordian knot? Note: Gordian knot is used to describe a problem that is very difficult to solve. The federal deficit has become the Gordian knot of Washington. He found himself tied up in a real emotional Gordian Knot. Note: According to an ancient legend, Gordius, the king of Phrygia, tied a knot that nobody could untie. It was said that if anyone untied it, they would become the next ruler of Asia. When Alexander the Great heard this, he solved the problem by cutting through the knot with a sword.
See also: cut, Gordian, knot

cut the Gordian knot

solve or remove a problem in a direct or forceful way, rejecting gentler or more indirect methods.
The knot referred to is that with which Gordius, king of ancient Phrygia (in Asia Minor), fastened the yoke of his wagon to the pole. Its complexity was such that it gave rise to the legend that whoever could undo it would become the ruler of Asia. When Alexander the Great passed that way en route to conquer the East he is said simply to have severed the knot with his sword.
See also: cut, Gordian, knot

cut/untie the ˌGordian ˈknot

solve a very difficult or complicated problem with forceful action: Will the negotiators be able to untie the Gordian knot?This expression comes from the legend in which King Gordius tied a very complicated knot and said that whoever untied it would become the ruler of Asia. Alexander the Great cut through the knot with his sword.
See also: cut, Gordian, knot

Gordian knot

A difficult problem that can be solved by an unexpected and simple method. According to an old Greek legend, a poor peasant named Gordius appeared in the public square of Phrygia in an ox cart. Since an oracle had prophesized that the future king would ride into town in a wagon, Gordius was made ruler. In gratitude, Gordius dedicated his ox cart to Zeus and tied the cart to a pole with a highly intricate knot, whereupon an oracle foretold that whosoever untied the knot would rule all of Asia. Although many tried in vain to untie the knot, it took Alexander the Great to do so, which he did with one cut of his sword. That might not have been the method that Gordius or the oracle had in mind, but it was good enough to enable Alexander to conquer most of Asia as well as a large chunk of the rest of the known world.
See also: Gordian, knot
References in periodicals archive ?
Some of the overlapping strands woven into the Gordian knot of antimicrobial resistance are myriad mutations and adaptations of various infectious organisms, lack of development of new antimicrobial agents, modern agricultural practice, and ineffective antibiotic stewardship.
The Gordian Surgical two-in-one trocar and closure device that offers surgeons a simple, economical solution for opening and suturing internal incisions made during laparoscopic surgery.
The Gordian Group is a provider of construction data, software and services that companies rely on to pursue efficient and effective construction planning, estimating and procurement.
Louis is very deserving of his new role as The Gordian Group's Pacific South Region Manager because he has been instrumental in serving clients there and building our company's business," said Robert Coffey, President of The Gordian Group.
But this kind of decent yet slim gain does little to untie the Gordian knot.
In Gordian Runoff, the Chief Justice after an extensive review of the cases and international commentary concluded that the decision in Oil Basins in requiring detailed reasons was wrong and that there is no requirement for an arbitrator to produce "a standard of reasons equivalent to those required of a judge at common law" 3.
lt;p>Halper says "if the Labour government does not help Obama cut the Gordian Knot of Occupation, it will be impossible to achieve an equitable two-state solution.
HEALTH CARE, A GORDIAN KNOT OF COST AND ACCESS, FACES REFORM"
Before embarking on long-winded analysis of Diligence versus Apathy, we would remind readers of the legend of the Gordian knot.
The country really needs a party of Restoration; a party capable of fulfilling some obvious and common-sense policies, prepared to cut Gordian Knots and proclaim a few pragmatic sanctions.
This tiny country is held fast by a Gordian knot of unusual complexity, one whose many strands lead to such places as Israel, Syria, America and Iran.
The only answer to this problem is to cut the Gordian knot (no pun intended), leave the European Union and repeal all the restrictive, useless legislation emanating from it.
A Gordian Maugg Film production in association with ZDF, Arte and Transit Film.
We have cut the Gordian Knot, so the current issue is Volume 42, Number 1, and is dated Winter, 2007.