tit for tat

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tit for tat

Describing an act of retaliation. The phrase is most likely an alteration of the Dutch phrase "tip for tap," which means "blow for blow." She's mad at me, so she refuses to help me plan this event—typical tit for tat.
See also: tat, tit

tit for tat

Repayment in kind, retaliation, as in If he won't help with the beach clean-up, I won't run a booth at the bake sale; that's tit for tat . This term is believed to be a corruption of tip for tap, which meant "a blow for a blow." Its current form dates from the mid-1500s.
See also: tat, tit

tit for tat

Tit for tat is something that someone does to upset or harm someone who has upset or harmed them. In an apparent tit for tat, he announced he was sacking the members of two committees responsible for reactor safety. Note: Tit for tat is also used before nouns. A tit for tat dispute has led to the virtual closure of the border between the two countries.
See also: tat, tit

tit for tat

a situation in which an injury or insult is given in return or retaliation.
See also: tat, tit

ˌtit for ˈtat

a situation in which you do something unpleasant to somebody because they have done something unpleasant to you: He hit me, so I hit him back — it was tit for tat.the routine tit for tat when countries expel each other’s envoys
See also: tat, tit

tit for tat

Payment in kind; precise retaliation. Most authorities believe this expression was a corruption of tip for tap, meaning “a blow for a blow.” It was already in its current form in the sixteenth century. John Heywood’s Proverbs (1546) stated, “Sens tyt for tat (quoth I) on euen hand is set, Set the hares head against the goose ieblet,” and in his Spider and Flie (1556), “That is tit for tat in this altricacion.”
See also: tat, tit
References in periodicals archive ?
But in interactions between a stronger, well-organized country and a weaker country that cannot control militants acting from its own territory, a tit-for-tat rule can lead to a cycle of attacks and counterattacks.
Russia has also expelled Estonias military attache as a tit-for-tat measure to the expulsion of Russian diplomats, Delfi news portal said.
Summary: Tensions spiked in Ain al-Hilweh Friday following the assassination of a Fatah party member, igniting fears of the return of tit-for-tat attacks in the Palestinian refugee camp.
Global Banking News-October 17, 2013--EU threatens US with tit-for-tat action over higher capital holding rates for foreign banks(C)2013 ENPublishing - http://www.enpublishing.co.uk
LAHORE -- In a tit-for-tat move, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Tuesday announced to file a defamation case against MQM leadership.
Summary: EU and Chinese trade officials will meet informally on Monday amid a series of tit-for-tat ...
Ventrell said, "this is a legislative tit-for-tat that has taken on both sides and has been done in the
12 has triggered a chain reaction of tit-for-tat responses and raised tensions on the Korean Peninsula.
PUNE -- While both countries struggle to uphold the ceasefire agreement after the recent incidents of cross-border firing at the LoC, Indian social activist Anna Hazare has called for a "tit-for-tat" reply and to wage a war against Pakistan, Indian media reported on Friday.
Tit-for-tat policy: Iran has routinely followed a policy of retaliation, arguing that if someone does something illegal or immoral against Iran, Iran is justified in doing the same thing in return.
A Nepalese man who was bitten by a cobra snake bit it back and killed the reptile in a tit-for-tat attack, a newspaper said on Thursday.
If NATO-led soldiers continued to attack Pakistani military bases, they would face a tit-for-tat response, he warned.
WE watch The X Factor to be entertained, not to see the judges indulge in tit-for-tat catfights every week or hear about the terrible lives that the acts have led in the past.
Summary: A gun gang pair have been jailed for life for the murder of an innocent 16-year-old girl when a tit-for-tat revenge hit went wrong.
If this is a tit-for-tat operation due to terrorism restrictions and student visa scrutinisation in Europe and the UK, it is a bad move.