between the devil and the deep blue sea


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Related to between the devil and the deep blue sea: between a rock and a hard place

between the devil and the deep blue sea

Facing two equally unpleasant, dangerous, or risky alternatives, when the avoidance of one ensures encountering the harm of the other. I was between the devil and the deep blue sea, for if I didn't take out another loan—and go deeper into debt—I could not pay off the debts I already owed. The police knew with certainty he had drugs in his car, so he became trapped between the devil and the deep blue sea: either lie to the police, or admit that the drugs belonged to him.
See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea

devil and deep blue sea

See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

mainly BRITISH
If you are between the devil and the deep blue sea, you are in a difficult situation where the two possible courses of action or choices that you can take are equally bad. I can see you're caught between the devil and the deep blue sea — if you support your daughter, your partner will be hurt. Note: The origin of this expression is in shipping, not religion. It is unclear exactly what the `devil' was, but it is thought to have been some kind of seam or plank that was awkward and dangerous to reach, so a sailor who had to make it waterproof was in a very unsafe position, and risked falling into the water.
See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

caught in a dilemma; trapped between two equally dangerous alternatives.
See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the ˌdevil and the deep blue ˈsea

in a situation where you have to choose between two things that are equally bad: In this situation, the government finds itself caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.
See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

Between two equally unacceptable choices.
See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea
References in periodicals archive ?
The full-length 52-minute version of Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea can be downloaded for a user-nominated fee via its official website <http://deepblueseafilm.
With the appearance of Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea nearly twenty years later, Marcus Rediker--like Lemisch before him--pursued the hidden history of the Anglo-American seafarer in the early modern period.
Hence the term stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea.
An eco-minded fish lover who commits this little cheat sheet to memory won't be left stranded between the devil and the deep blue sea.
I am a man between the devil and the deep blue sea.
So that French electors will in two weeks be presented with a choice between the devil and the deep blue sea.