high-water mark

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high-water mark

1. Literally, the highest level a body of water has reached, or the mark designating such a point. Due to climate change, the high-water mark on this beach has been getting higher every year.
2. The apex, peak, or highest point of something. The high-water mark of the country's economic boom was in 2007.
See also: mark
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

high-water mark

The peak of something, especially an achievement. For example, This composition is the high-water mark of his entire output. This expression alludes to the highest mark left on shore by the tide. [Mid-1800s]
See also: mark
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

high-ˈwater mark

the highest stage of achievement: This was the high-water mark of the ancient Greek civilization.
This refers to the highest mark left by the sea on the land or by a river when it floods.
See also: mark
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

high-water mark

The acme of achievement. The term alludes to the mark left when a body of water reaches its highest level, as in a flood. By the early nineteenth century it had been transferred to the peak of other events or accomplishments, as in Ralph Waldo Emerson’s statement in 1856, about William Wordsworth: “‘The Ode on Immortality’ is the high-water mark which the intellect has reached in this age.”
See also: mark
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Since its 2003 release, Nemo has become the high water mark for animation.
THE chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland yesterday insisted 2012 will be the "high water mark" for the bank's scandals, as it came under fire for paying bonuses of PS607m despite posting a PS5.2bn loss.
The unprotected pile had significant corrosion, particularly in the area exposed above the high water mark.
Afterwards, I had bronze plates fixed at three separate locations indicating the high water mark.
Its highest point rises 157ft above the high water mark.
This, however, proved to be the high water mark for Moseley as a sixth wicket stand of 47 runs over 10 overs between Chris Pearce (24) and Stuart Lampitt (35) grabbed the initiative back for Himley.
Foreign Secretary Mr Robin Cook said yesterday the reported murder of a moderate Kosovo Albanian leader was a "high water mark" of Serb brutality in Kosovo.
Yet there is a relatively tiny minority that remembers the OEO fondly, as a kind of high water mark of noble purpose in domestic government.
The wi is trading in the 0.73% region, and is off of the year's high water mark of 0.82%.
SINCE 2003's White Stripes high water mark Elephant, Jack has sometimes felt at sea.
Outside, between the breakwaters, the waterway was crowded with vessels of every size, all gay with bunting fore and aft and from the main truck to the deck, waiting to take their place in the triumphant entry into the dock as soon as the tide had reached high water mark.
Clean sand could be extracted from farther out on the beach and built up to a height just above the high water mark, the newly-established beach would then remain clear of mud and debris deposited by high tides.
Around 20 people on the beach joined the owner and members of the Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade to slowly haul the waterlogged vehicle up the beach, above high water mark.