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at (something's) lowest ebb

In a state of decline; less or lower than the typical standard or expectation. The charity struggled to help those in need, as outside donations were at their lowest ebb in years.
See also: ebb, low

ebb and flow

to decrease and then increase, as with tides; a decrease followed by an increase, as with tides. The fortunes of the major political parties tend to ebb and flow over time. The ebb and flow of democracy through history is a fascinating subject.
See also: and, ebb, flow

ebb away

to recede; to subside; to flow back. His life ebbed away little by little. As the sunlight ebbed away, the sky took on a grayish color.
See also: away, ebb

the ebb and flow of something

the continually changing character of something There is a normal ebb and flow in nature, for example, when there is just the right amount of rain and when there is not enough.
Usage notes: often said about something that regularly gets larger and smaller: There's a constant ebb and flow of traffic on the highway.
Related vocabulary: ups and downs
See also: and, ebb, flow, of

at (a) low ebb

(slightly formal) also at its lowest ebb
below the usual condition or standard The divorce comes at a time when Jackson's career is at a low ebb. Support for the arts has reached its lowest ebb and we hope it won't go any lower.
Related vocabulary: up to par
See also: ebb, low

the ebb and flow

the way in which the level of something frequently becomes higher or lower in a situation (often + of ) The government did nothing about the recession, hoping it was just part of the ebb and flow of the economy.
See also: and, ebb, flow

a low ebb

a bad state (not used with the ) Respect for the police is at a low ebb. I'd just separated from my wife and was at a fairly low ebb. (= was feeling sad and without hope) Relations between the two countries have reached their lowest ebb (= are the worst they have been) since the second world war.
See also: ebb, low

at a low ebb

At a low point, in a state of decline or depression. For example, The current recession has put our business at a low ebb. This idiom transfers the low point of a tide to a decline in human affairs. [Mid-1600s]
See also: ebb, low

ebb and flow

A decline and increase, constant fluctuations. For example, He was fascinated by the ebb and flow of the Church's influence over the centuries. This expression alludes to the inward and outward movement of ocean tides. [Late 1500s]
See also: and, ebb, flow
References in periodicals archive ?
LaPorte aligns EBB's work with Smith's through her expressed interest in A Life-Drama, through parallels in their plots and themes, and through Pierre Bourdieu's notion of "the cultural game of 'loser wins'" (830, 831-32), arguing that the "authenticity" of both poems derives from the poets' outsider status, with EBB alienated from cultural power by her sex and Smith by his class standing.
Ovigerous females swam vertically on ebb tides during both day and night throughout embryo development and remained on the bottom during flood fide.
The EBB is a wonderful example of how advanced technology can make useful information available to large numbers of people at reasonable costs.
EBB delighted in the fact that Robert had a room "'all to himself'" even in Bagni di Lucca (p.
The delay of ``Curtains,'' brought about in part because of the deaths of Ebb and Stone, made it possible for Pierce to do two ``Curtains'' readings while still continuing his eight-performances-per-week engagement with Tim Curry, Hank Azaria and the Pythonians.
coli, enterococci) were measured in the creek and throughout the wetland during different tidal flows (flood and ebb conditions), and amplitudes (neap vs.
In sport, a player could be put out to perform when there are low ebbs in his energy field and he would run the risk of injury.
Any chance of The Visit--their last collaboration to make it to the stage before Fred Ebb died-still making it to Broadway?
An ambient instrumental, "Midwest" is also a classic travel record: repeated themes ebb and flow over seven minutes, shifting phase like the hypnotic repetitions you get on a freeway.
Of course, these rankings do not reflect the ebb and flow of network attention over time.
Dildy, the EBB[R] balloon is made of a malleable yet extremely strong material, allowing EBB to expand and conform to any uterine shape.
Date of opening quotation: 05/08/2015, Time: 14:00, Location: EBB AG Engineering Railway Construction Ltd.
During their prime mission, from March through May, Ebb and Flow collected data while orbiting at an average altitude of 34 miles (55 kilometers).
Measurements by the NASA spacecraft called Ebb and Flow also found that the moon's crust, or outermost layer, is much thinner than scientists thought - only about 25 miles thick.
The middle section covers the Brownings' stay in London from July to early October, 1852, where they saw or met many other English and American writers, among them Tennyson, Coventry Patmore, John Ruskin--whose collection of "Turners" EBB considered "divine" (p.