ace


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ace (something)

To do exceptionally well in something, especially an exam or other high-pressure situation. I feel like I aced that interview, so I'm pretty sure the job is mine. I managed to ace that test without even studying for it.
See also: ace

ace it

To achieve total success at something, or to complete something to the best of one's ability. I'm not worried, I always ace it at job interviews. I'm sure he'll ace it at the match tomorrow morning.
See also: ace

ace up (one's) sleeve

A secret advantage. My stamina is the ace up my sleeve for this race—the other runners don't stand a chance! The defense attorney waited for just the right time to play the ace up her sleeve—a new eye-witness.
See also: ace, sleeve, up

ace in the hole

 and someone's ace in the hole
Fig. something important held in reserve. The twenty-dollar bill I keep in my shoe is my ace in the hole.
See also: ace, hole

ace in(to something)

to be lucky in getting admitted to something. I aced into the history class at the last minute.
See also: ace

ace out

to be fortunate or lucky. Freddy aced out at the dentist's office with only one cavity.
See also: ace, out

ace out (of something)

to get out of something through luck; to evade or avoid something narrowly. I just aced out of having to take the math test!
See also: ace, out

ace someone out

to maneuver someone out; to win out over someone. Martha aced out Rebecca to win the first place trophy.
See also: ace, out

*black as a skillet

 and *black as a stack of black cats; *black as a sweep; *black as coal; *black as night; *black as pitch; *black as the ace of spades
completely dark or black. (*Also: as ~.) I don't want to go down to the cellar. It's as black as a skillet down there. Her hair was black as a stack of black cats. After playing in the mud all morning, the children were as black as night. The stranger's clothes were all black as pitch.
See also: black, skillet

come within an ace of something

to come very close to [doing] something. I came within an ace of leaving school. I'm glad you talked me out of it. Donna came within an ace of having an accident.
See also: ace, come, of, within

have something up one's sleeve

 and have an ace up one's sleeve
Fig. to have a secret or surprise plan or solution (to a problem). (Alludes to cheating at cards by having a card hidden in one's sleeve.) I've got something up my sleeve, and it should solve all your problems. I'll tell you what it is after I'm elected. The manager has an ace up her sleeve. She'll surprise us with it later.
See also: have, sleeve, up

hold all the aces

 and hold all the cards
to be in a favorable position; to be in a controlling position. (Alludes to having possession of all four aces or all the high cards in a card game.) How can I advance in my career when my competitor holds all the aces? If I held all the aces, I'd be able to do great things. I tried to get my points across, but Joan held all the cards and the board voted for her plan.
See also: ace, all, hold

within an ace of (doing) something

 and within a hair('s breadth) of something
very close to doing something. I came within an ace of getting into an accident. We were within an ace of beating the all-time record. We were within a hair's breadth of beating the all-time record.
See also: ace, of, within

an ace in the hole

  (American)
an advantage that you have that other people do not know about The local team has an ace in the hole with their new player.
See also: ace, hole

come within an ace of something/doing something

to almost achieve something Linford Christie came within an ace of the world indoor record for the 100m last night.
See also: ace, come, of, within

have an ace up your sleeve

to have an advantage that other people do not know about The new game show has an ace up its sleeve. It will allow viewers to play from home and win prizes.
See also: ace, have, sleeve, up

play your ace

to do the thing that you know will bring you success The prosecutor played her ace, the results of the DNA tests on samples taken from the victim's clothing.
See also: ace, play

have/hold all the aces

to be in a strong position when you are competing with someone else, because you have all the advantages In the battle between road builders and environmentalists, the road builders seem to hold all the aces.
See also: ace, all, have

have something up your sleeve

to have a secret idea or plan If this trip doesn't work out I've still got a few ideas up my sleeve.
See also: have, sleeve, up

ace in the hole

A hidden advantage or resource kept in reserve until needed, as in The prosecutor had an ace in the hole: an eyewitness. The term comes from stud poker, where each player is dealt one card face down-the so-called hole card-and the rest face up. Should the hole card be an ace, the player has a hidden advantage. Hole here simply means "a hiding place." In the 19th-century American West, the expression was used to refer to a hidden weapon, such as a gun concealed in a shoulder holster. By the 1920s it had become a metaphor for any surprise advantage or leverage.
See also: ace, hole

ace it

Accomplish something with success, as in I'm sure he'll ace it when he takes that bar exam. The verb ace originated in tennis with the meaning "to hit an unreturnable serve against an opponent." The idiom ace it, however, originated as student slang for getting an "A" on an exam or in a course but soon was extended to other successful accomplishments. [Slang; mid-1900s]
See also: ace

ace out

1. Get the better of, defeat, as in Our team is bound to ace them out, or Those calculus problems aced me out again. [Slang; mid-1900s]
2. Take advantage of or cheat someone, as in John thought they were trying to ace him out of his promised promotion. [Slang; c. 1920]
See also: ace, out

card up one's sleeve

Also, ace up one's sleeve. A hidden or secret advantage or resource, as in Before we make a decision, let's see if management has another card up its sleeve, or You can count on John to have an ace up his sleeve. The practice of storing something in one's sleeve dates from the 16th century, when clothes rarely had pockets. The current term comes from gambling, where a dishonest player might so conceal an ace or other winning card. [Mid-1800s]
See also: card, sleeve, up

hold all the aces

Also, hold all the trumps. Be in a winning position, as in We can't argue with Jeff; he holds all the aces, or If Jean refuses, he'll reveal that he holds all the trumps and force her to give in. These expressions allude to card games in which the ace or a trump card outranks all the others. Also see play one's cards right; trump card.
See also: ace, all, hold

within an ace of

Also, within an inch of. Very close to, within a narrow margin of, as in We were within an ace of calling you, but we'd lost your phone number, or We were within an inch of buying tickets for that concert. The first term refers to the ace of dice, that is, the one pip on a die. The lowest number one can throw with a pair of dice is two (two aces), a throw that is within an ace of one. The term began to be used for other kinds of near miss by about 1700.
See also: ace, of, within

ace

1. mod. [of persons] best; top-rated. She is an ace reporter with the newspaper.
2. n. one dollar. It only costs an ace. Buy two.
3. tv. to pass a test easily, with an A grade. (see also ace out.) I knew I wouldn’t ace it, but I never thought I’d flunk it!
4. n. a nickname for a foolish and ineffectual person. (Sarcastic. Usually a term of address.) Hey, ace, hand me that monkey wrench—if you know what one is.
5. tv. to surpass someone or something; to beat someone or something; to ace someone out. The Japanese firm aced the Americans by getting the device onto the shelves first.

ace boom-boom

and ace boon-coon
n. one’s good and loyal friend. (Black. Ace boon-coon is not as common as the first entry and is objected to because of coon.) Hey girlfriend, you are my ace boom-boom. Where is my old ace boon-coon, bro?
See also: ace

ace boon-coon

verb
See also: ace

ace in the hole

n. something important held in reserve. Mary’s beautiful singing voice was her ace in the hole in case everything else failed.
See also: ace, hole

ace in(to something)

in. to happen onto something good; to manage to get into something. I hope I can ace into the afternoon physics class.
See also: ace

ace in

verb
See also: ace

ace out

in. to be fortunate or lucky. I really aced out on that test in English.
See also: ace, out

ace someone out

tv. to maneuver someone out; to win out over someone. (see also aced, ace.) Martha aced out Rebecca to win the first-place trophy.
See also: ace, out

aced

1. mod. outmaneuvered; outscored. “You are aced, sucker!” shouted Rebecca as she passed Martha in the 100-yard sprint.
2. mod. alcohol intoxicated. How can anybody be so aced on three beers?
See also: ace

have an ace up one’s sleeve

tv. to have something useful in reserve; to have a special trick available. (Have got can replace have.) I still have an ace up my sleeve that you don’t know about.
See also: ace, have, sleeve, up

hold all the aces

tv. to be in control of everything. The boss holds all the aces on this deal.
See also: ace, all, hold

within an ace of (doing) something

mod. very close to doing something. We were within an ace of beating the all-time record.
See also: ace, of, within

within an ace of something

verb
See also: ace, of, within

ace in the hole

/up one's sleeve
A hidden advantage or resource kept in reserve until needed.
See also: ace, hole

within an ace of

On the verge of; very near to: came within an ace of losing the election.
See also: ace, of, within
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Russia represents one of a number of exciting new opportunities for ACE in Europe as we continue our geographical expansion.
ACE recently released the white paper, "Trends in Securities Class Action Litigation and Directors and Officers Liability Insurance," which examines the number of class actions pending in federal courts during 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005; the allegations involved, including specific accounting allegations; securities judgments; types of plaintiffs; and, the industries targeted.
Samson's new responsibilities include oversight for ACE's philanthropic and corporate giving, sponsorship, budgeting, facilities management, business continuity planning, the human resources function in Bermuda and administrative oversight for ACE Limited.
based companies going global has created the need for environmental coverage that can be applied to locations worldwide," said William Hazelton, Senior Vice President, ACE Environmental Risk.
Mr Ward joins ACE from AXA Affin General Insurance Bhd in Malaysia where he was President/CEO since 2001.
As recent events have shown, businesses must be prepared to respond when their employees are stranded, hurt, kidnapped or threatened overseas," said William House, Senior Vice President, ACE Global Solutions.