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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

a Gordian knot

a difficult problem
Usage notes: In an old story, King Gordius of Phrygia tied a complicated knot which no one could make loose, until Alexander the Great cut it with his sword.
Homelessness in the inner cities has become a real Gordian knot.
See also: 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 ?
Founded in 1988, Gordian Group is an investment bank providing advisory services with respect to financial restructurings, complex, "story" and/or distressed M&A and capital raises, both in and out of bankruptcy, as well as structured finance remediation, opinions and expert witness and litigation support services.
Gordian Group's CEO William Pollak said : 'BIDsafe is designed to keep the bid-submission process safe and beyond reproach.
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.
The issue has arisen in several cases since the Gordian Runoff case including the decision in Thoroughvision Pty Ltd v Sky Channel Pty Ltd [2010] VSC 139 5.
In the future, Gordian plans to upgrade its filter media, geotextile and PU leather substrate products by importing various machines and technicians.
Perry, who designed a previous Red Storm game called Politika (which also features Gordian and which also led to a Clancy-labeled book), says the anti-crypto-export theme was just a way making Gordian a maverick hero in the Clancy vein.
Syndicated columnist Richard Cohen of the Washington Post, who wrote a piece in April about the Gordian knot-like nature of political maneuvering, was not pleased by the inquiry.
His delight in discovery continues to shine in the 1993 Each Time You Carry Me This Way, in which he invents different methods for a man to carry a woman, from a Queen-of-Sheba ride on the shoulders of two men to couplings as intricate as the Gordian knot.
The second paragraph, a veritable Gordian knot of AP double, speak, read:
Far from the Global Village that media visionary Marshall McLuhan once predicted-in which everyone would communicate in the same language-worldwide business, currently taking place in more than three dozen languages, is more of a Gordian Knot.
20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Gordian Surgical , a portfolio company of Trendlines Medical , recently announced the completion of a raise nearing $1 million, including an investment from Virtus Inspire Ventures, a Chinese venture capital firm.
Basingstoke based Gordian Strapping has supplied ten new OMS Side Seal Compression Strapping Machines to Crown Packaging UK PLC.
Zarko Vasilevski from Nova Makedonija claims that the state once again got tangled up in Gordian knot in its intent to help citizens.
The dispute over costs between the independent care-home owners and the local authorities which pick up the bill is one of Gordian knot proportions.
I am suggesting that Darboven's installation was an unresolvable contradiction, a Gordian knot of alienation.