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A victory that is not worth achieving because of the excessive toll it takes on the victor. Winning the lawsuit was a Pyrrhic victory, since it cost us everything we had.
A victory that is offset by staggering losses, as in The campaign was so divisive that even though he won the election it was a Pyrrhic victory . This expression alludes to Kind Pyrrhus of Epirus, who defeated the Romans at Asculum in b.c. 279, but lost his best officers and many of his troops. Pyrrhus then said: "Another such victory and we are lost." In English the term was first recorded (used figuratively) in 1879.
a Pyrrhic victory
If you describe a victory as a Pyrrhic victory, you mean that although someone has won or gained something, they have also lost something which was worth even more. If gun-control advocates achieve their goals by threats, rather than through properly enacted legislation, it will be a Pyrrhic victory. Note: This expression comes from the victory of King Pyrrhus over the Romans, in which much of King Pyrrhus's army was killed.
Pyrrhic victorya victory gained at too great a cost.
Pyrrhus was a king of Epirus, who defeated the Romans at Asculum in 279 bc , but in doing so sustained heavy losses and lost his finest troops.
a ˌPyrrhic ˈvictorya victory which is achieved at too high a price and therefore not worth having: It was a Pyrrhic victory. They won the strike but then most of them lost their jobs.This idiom refers to Pyrrhus, King of Epirus, who in 279BC defeated the Romans but lost all his best officers and men.
A victory that is worse for the winners than the losers. The term refers to the victory of King Pyrrhus of Epirus over the Romans at Asculum in 279 b.c. In this first major battle between the Greeks and the Romans, Pyrrhus lost his best officers and many of his troops. Ever since the term Pyrrhic victory has meant a victory so costly that it counts as a defeat.