lay of the land


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lay of the land

 
1. Lit. the arrangement of features on an area of land. (Also with lie, especially British English.) The surveyor mapped the lay of the land. The geologist studied the lay of the land, trying to determine if there was oil below.
2. Fig. the arrangement or organization of something other than land. As soon as I get the lay of the land in my new job, things will go better. The company's corporate structure was complex, so understanding the lay of the land took time.
See also: land, lay, of

lay of the land

The nature, arrangement, or disposition of something.
See also: land, lay, of
References in periodicals archive ?
But The Lay of the Land tells us, without being the least bit heavy-handed, that all kinds of things befall all of us, whether we're the Prince of Denmark or a whale-hunter or just a guy selling real estate.
Where The Lay of the Land excels is when Ford draws us out of Frank's head and into the world.
As soon as I see the hidden, brushy fence-line, I realize that the vegetative and topographic lay of the land has come together to form a potential hotspot for ambushing rutting bucks that are using the fence-line as a shortcut between the two areas of cover on both sides of the pasture.
It involves several design strategies: conserving the lay of the land, minimizing the added infrastructure and impervious materials, reducing the frequency of water runoff, detaining stormwater on the lots, and preventing pollution.
Even his relatively permanent works--such as the drystone wall at Storm King, the sculpture park in the Hudson River valley north of New York City--respect the lay of the land as Earthworks in America did not.
The phrases told you the lay of the land about a person's sexuality.
The lay of the land is shifting," says Stuart Rothenberg, a Washington political analyst.
Besides familiarizing themselves with the lay of the land, the Russians will confer with Japanese officials to obtain details about local conditions, security and activities that will help in planning for the April 11-13 summit.
In addition to the animals' amenability, the lay of the land lends itself to research into animal behavior.
We are focusing our growth in areas where we have experience and know the lay of the land," added Covey.
The 2014 Lay of the Land Florida Land Conference is the industry's premier land values event for major Florida landowners, buyers, and developers.
I've already lived there for three months and I have the lay of the land.
The document showed the lay of the land in the county before Cavaliers and Roundheads tramped their way over the countryside during the English Civil War.
You'd know the whole lay of the land if you reviewed the information we had," Scheuer told the Daily News.
We're due for some change in the lay of the land and right now we don't know what that change will be and how it will play into the economy,'' Karevoll said.