on the nail


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Related to on the nail: pay on the nail

on the nail

  (British & Australian)
if you pay an amount of money on the nail, you pay all of it immediately He always paid cash, on the nail.
See nail colours to the mast, hit the nail on the head
See also: nail, on

on the nail

1. Immediately, without delay, as in He paid us back on the nail. [c. 1600]
2. Under discussion or consideration, as in The subject of the budget deficit has been on the nail for some time. [Late 1800s] The precise allusion in these expressions has been lost. Neither has any connection to hit the nail on the head (see under hit the bull's-eye).
See also: nail, on