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in the middle of something/doing something

busy doing something We were in the middle of supper when we heard the news. When she called, I was in the middle of giving the baby a bath.
See also: middle, of

in somebody's midst

existing in or among a group of people This law will help us identify and catch terrorists in our midst before they have an opportunity to strike. They would like the troublemakers in their midst to be dealt with.
See also: midst

in the midst of something

1. in the middle of or surrounded by something He criticized the plan to build homes in the midst of a desert. I was sitting in the midst of a classroom with little kids, listening to a children's story.
2. experiencing something We are in the midst of the worst recession in ten years. The company has been in the midst of a major reorganization.
See also: midst, of

in the midst of doing something

in the process of doing something I know that you're in the midst of writing a term paper but I was hoping you could come out today. People in the midst of moving would benefit from the information given on the website.
See also: midst, of

in the middle of

1. Also, in the midst of. During, while engaged in, as in He stopped him in the middle of his speech, or I'm in the midst of calculating my income tax. The first expression dates from about 1600, the second from about 1500. Also see in the midst.
2. in the middle of nowhere. In a very remote location, as in We found a great little hotel, out in the middle of nowhere. [Early 1900s]
See also: middle, of

in the midst

1. Also, in one's midst. Surrounded by, among, as in I saw a familiar face in the midst of the crowd, or To think there was a Nobel Prize winner in our midst! [c. 1500s]
2. See in the middle of, def. 1.
See also: midst
References in classic literature ?
As may be imagined, he lost no time in setting out to deliver Rosalie, and travelled so fast that he soon arrived at the forest, in the midst of which she lay a captive.
I saw there in the midst of this fire that burns not the swift and elegant porpoise
Phileas Fogg looked at Sir Francis Cromarty for an explanation; but the general could not tell what meant a halt in the midst of this forest of dates and acacias.
Every one turned towards the procureur, who, unable to bear the universal gaze now riveted on him alone, advanced staggering into the midst of the tribunal, with his hair dishevelled and his face indented with the mark of his nails.
A great tumult arose, in the midst of which even the noise of thunder could not have been heard.
Then she heard the muttered words of prayer, in the midst of which she started, and would have arisen.
But all these, with the other historic personages, in the midst of whom the chair had so often stood, had passed, both in substance and shadow, from the scene of ages.
In traversing it, however, one of the horses was swept suddenly from his footing, and his rider was flung from the saddle into the midst of the stream.
Their proprietor inserting his head into the midst of them, impelled his necklace of cocoanuts through the water by striking out beneath the surface with his feet.
And let there be a fountain, or some fair work of statuas, in the midst of this court; and to be paved as the other court was.
It was, no doubt, one of those luminous illusions that sometimes impress the eye in the midst of very profound darkness.
The man who wrote that word upon the wall disappeared from the midst of the generations of man many centuries ago; the word, in its turn, has been effaced from the wall of the church; the church will, perhaps, itself soon disappear from the face of the earth.
At that time salt-mining was the great industry in that part of West Virginia, and the little town of Malden was right in the midst of the salt-furnaces.
But it can't be he, alone in the midst of this empty field
Lydgate too was reticent in the midst of his confidence.