Waterloo

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meet one's Waterloo

Fig. to meet one's final and insurmountable challenge. (Alludes to the final defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo.) The boss is being very hard on Bill. It seems that Bill has finally met his Waterloo. John was more than Sally could handle. She has finally met her Waterloo.
See also: meet, Waterloo

meet your Waterloo

if someone who has been successful in the past meets their Waterloo, they are defeated by someone who is too strong for them or by a problem which is too difficult for them
Usage notes: The French leader Napoleon was finally defeated at the battle of Waterloo in 1815.
She finally met her Waterloo when she tried to take on the club champion.
See meet in the flesh, come to a sticky end
See also: meet, Waterloo

meet one's Waterloo

Suffer a major defeat, as in Our team's done well this season but is about to meet its Waterloo. This term alludes to Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo, Belgium, in 1815, marking the end of his military domination of Europe. It was being transferred to other kinds of defeat by the mid-1800s.
See also: meet, Waterloo
References in classic literature ?
I recommend, sir, that you take a cab, call off your spaniel who is scratching at my front door, and proceed to Waterloo to meet Sir Henry Baskerville.
His intention had been to kill the day somehow in the streets and then dine at a restaurant, but he could not face again the sight of cheerful people, talking, laughing, and making merry; so he went back to Waterloo, and on his way through the Westminster Bridge Road bought some ham and a couple of mince pies and went back to Barnes.
We got to Waterloo at eleven, and asked where the eleven-five started from.
She saw also the arches of Waterloo Bridge and the carts moving across them, like the line of animals in a shooting gallery.
Some great scheme was evidently brewing in his mighty mind a trip across the Alps, a bonfire at Moscow, or a little skirmish at Waterloo perhaps, for he marched in silent majesty till suddenly a gentle snore disturbed the imperial reverie.
In his small way the author of these dispositions was something of a strategist; if Napoleon had planned as intelligently at Waterloo he would have won that memorable battle and been overthrown later.
Infallibility was the making of Napoleon; he would have been a god if he had not filled the world with the sound of his fall at Waterloo.
In Paddington all Cornwall is latent and the remoter west; down the inclines of Liverpool Street lie fenlands and the illimitable Broads; Scotland is through the pylons of Euston; Wessex behind the poised chaos of Waterloo.
That period of Jos's life which now ensued was so full of incident, that it served him for conversation for many years after, and even the tiger-hunt story was put aside for more stirring narratives which he had to tell about the great campaign of Waterloo.
Then at last I sat back and lit a cigarette, and the lights of Waterloo reeled out behind.
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