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alter ego

1. Another name or identity that one assumes. He's a clean-cut accountant during the week, but on the weekend he indulges in hedonistic pursuits as his alter ego "Jack."
2. A separate or different aspect or element of one's personality, identity, or psyche. For such a quiet woman, she has a rage and temper at times that is like some alter ego.
3. A close, inseparable friend of very similar attitudes and interests. My girlfriend and I are so similar, we are like each other's alter ego.
4. A person who acts as a substitute for or copy of another person; a doppelgänger. Due to his increasingly failing health, the dictator's son has been running the country for the past month, essentially as his alter ego.
See also: alter, ego

circumstances alter cases

Unique circumstances can spur unconventional action. I know offering such a big refund isn't protocol, but it's for the CEO's grandmother, and circumstances alter cases.
See also: alter, case, circumstance

change beyond (all) recognition

To change so much or so dramatically as to now be completely unfamiliar or unrecognizable. I wouldn't have recognized her if she hadn't introduced herself—she's really changed beyond all recognition since we were kids!

change out of (all) recognition

To change so much or so dramatically as to now be completely unfamiliar or unrecognizable. I wouldn't have recognized her if she hadn't introduced herself—she's really changed out of recognition since we were kids!
See also: change, of, out, recognition

alter beyond (all) recognition

To change so much or so dramatically as to now be completely unfamiliar or unrecognizable. She had shown me some early drafts, but her final copy was really altered beyond all recognition.

alter out of (all) recognition

To change so much or so dramatically as to now be completely unfamiliar or unrecognizable. She had shown me some early drafts, but her final copy was really altered out of recognition.
See also: alter, of, out, recognition

Circumstances alter cases.

Prov. In unusual situations, people are allowed to do unusual things. Cashier: I'm sorry, this store does not accept personal checks. Customer: But I need this medicine, and I don't have any cash. I've shopped at this store for fifteen years. Surely you can trust me this once. Cashier: Well, all right. Circumstances alter cases.
See also: alter, case, Circumstance

change, alter, etc. beyond/out of (all) recogˈnition

change, etc. such a lot that people do not recognize you, it, etc: I went back to Birmingham after 20 years and it had changed beyond all recognition.She had changed beyond all recognition since I last saw her.
See also: beyond, of, out, recognition
References in periodicals archive ?
Nunez Cedeno, Rafael (1994), "The alterability of Spanish geminates and its effects on the uniform applicability condition", en Probus, num.
Using the two selected reference clays, S-2 (Cortijo de Archidona in the Serrata de Nijar, Almeria) and MCA-C (Cerro del Aguila-Cerro del Monte, in the province of Toledo), the characterisation of their physicochemical properties and alterability was detailed.
* Alterability. Electronic records are subject to alteration or destruction without detection, absent the use of technological controls.
(57) Judges should minimize the impact of precedent in order to allow themselves room for creative readings of the law; the fidelity to the past intrinsic to stare decisis decreasingly makes sense given the profound fluidity and alterability of twentieth-century social and economic affairs.
This is so, Hodge argues, because, the former "focuses on conceptions of sameness, of predictability and of fixity," whereas the latter "makes difference, the unexpected and alterability central" (1995, 9).
And the second passage transforms the canonical poetic reference--`And death shall have no dominion'--from religious into historical time--`And capital shall have no dominion'--in order to insist on the alterability of the existing human condition.
These practices remind us, at the graphic level, of the divisibility and the alterability of words, their permeability to alternate arrangement, variability, change.
The genealogist understands the will-to-power that inscribes and incorporates preponderant dispositions and habits, but the genealogist also knows that there is a degree of contingency (and thus human agency) within processes of inscription and incorporation that hold out the promise of alterability (e.g., Foucault 1977, 148-64).