Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to Mary: Mary Magdalene
Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!
In American football, a long forward pass with a low success of being caught, typically thrown in desperation at the end of a half. And he throws a Hail Mary! Ah, it's incomplete. No overtime tonight, folks.
Hail Mary pass
In American football, a long forward pass with a low success of being caught, typically thrown in desperation at the end of a half. And he throws a Hail Mary pass! Ah, it's incomplete. No overtime tonight, folks.
Hail Mary play
In American football, a long forward pass with a low success of being caught, typically thrown in desperation at the end of a half. And he throws a Hail Mary play! Ah, it's incomplete. No overtime tonight, folks.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!
An exclamation of shock, surprise, or exasperation. Jesus, Mary, and Joseph! Don't sneak up on me like that—you scared me half to death! I mean, Jesus, Mary, and Joseph! Does my boss expect me to be on the clock 24 hours a day?
See also: and
A place, location, or high-occupancy vehicle (especially a ship) that is inexplicably deserted or abandoned. An allusion to the Mary Celeste, an American merchant brigantine that was discovered floating off the Azores Islands in 1872 with no one on board and still in seaworthy condition. (Note: The variant spelling of "Marie" is the more common usage for the idiomatic reference, likely due to its use in a story by Arthur Conan Doyle.) We came upon a house in the woods, empty as the Marie Celeste, but left otherwise untouched.
slang Marijuana. Hey man, you know where we can score some Mary J around here? I only smoke Mary J on my own, because I get really paranoid around other people.
slang Marijuana. Hey man, you know where we can score some Mary Jane around here? I only smoke Mary Jane on my own, because I get really paranoid around other people.
In film and literature, an idealized female character who is exceptionally talented in a number of areas despite not having had the training or experience to realistically acquire such talents. The use of such a character is often seen as a method of author wish-fulfillment. The term was first used in this way by writer Paula Smith in 1973. Whether Rey from "Star Wars" is a Mary Sue has been a topic of debate.
sweet Mary(, mother of God)
An exclamation of alarm, amazement, or exasperation. (Could be considered blasphemous to some.) Sweet Mary, mother of God, I thought that car was going to hit me! Oh, sweet Mary, could you work any slower?
sweet Mary, mother of Jesus
An exclamation of alarm, amazement, or exasperation. (Could be considered blasphemous or offensive to some.) Sweet Mary, mother of Jesus, I thought that car was going to hit me! Oh, sweet Mary, mother of Jesus—could you work any slower?
A person, especially a woman, who spreads misery or ill fortune to other people or endeavors. A reference to the epithet of Mary Malon, a cook who was thought to have infected 22 people with typhoid fever from 1900–1907 as an asymptomatic carrier. You treat me like I'm some kind of Typhoid Mary, but it's your own mismanagement that has brought ruin to this farm. After yet another company where she worked went bankrupt, Janet began to feel like something of a Typhoid Mary.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
A carrier or spreader of misfortune, as in I swear he's a typhoid Mary; everything at the office has gone wrong since he was hired . This expression alludes to a real person, Mary Manson, who died in 1938. An Irish-born servant, she transmitted typhoid fever to others and was referred to as "typhoid Mary" from the early 1900s. The term was broadened to other carriers of calamity in the mid-1900s.
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.
You can describe someone as Typhoid Mary if they bring bad luck or harm to other people. After the relationship ended, she became a Typhoid Mary, spoiling the romantic lives of everyone around her. Note: Typhoid Mary was a cook who spread the disease typhoid to several hospitals that she worked in, though she never became ill herself.
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
1. and Mary J. and Maryjane n. marijuana. (see also jane.) I can’t live another day without Mary Jane!
2. n. a plain-looking girl. She’s just a Mary Jane and will never be a glamour girl.
See Mary Jane
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
hail Mary pass
A maneuver tried against heavy odds. This term originated in football, where it means a last-ditch attempt to score because time is running out. The name comes from the familiar prayer beginning with “Hail Mary” and alludes to the fact that the passer is, in effect, praying that his throw will succeed. A famous example occurred in 1984, when Boston College quarterback Doug Flutie threw a long pass into Miami’s end zone. It was caught by his roommate, Gerard Phelan, for a touchdown that put Boston into the 1985 Cotton Bowl. The term soon was transferred to other long-shot maneuvers. In the Persian Gulf War of 1991, Allied troops were lined up on Saudi soil, and between them and Kuwait City stood the entire Iraqi force. A French battalion, making a wide arc around both lines, moved some 150 miles behind the Iraqis and mounted a successful attack that in effect ended the war. In the press conference that followed, Allied commander Schwartzkopf called the maneuver “a Hail Mary play.”
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer