open sesame

(redirected from an open sesame)

open sesame

1. A phrase commonly (and usually humorously) used as a password, especially to gain entrance to something. In The Arabian Nights, "open sesame" is a magical phrase used to open a robbers' den. A: "What's the password?" B: "Um… open sesame?" If those kids are still blocking the door, tell them the password is "open sesame."
2. By extension, something that helps one to achieve a goal or access an opportunity. In this usage, the phrase is preceded by an article (for instance, "an open sesame"). Good grades in high school should be the only "open sesame" you need to get into the college you want.
See also: open
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

open sesame

a marvellous or irresistible means of achieving access to what would normally be inaccessible.
In the tale of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves in the Arabian Nights, the door of the robbers' cave was made to open by uttering this magic formula.
See also: open
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

open ˈsesame

(humorous) an easy way to gain or achieve something that is usually very difficult to get: Academic success is not always an open sesame to a well-paid job.The bank had just closed but I banged on the door and — open sesame — they let me in!This expression comes from the story Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. The words open sesame opened the door of the thieves’ cave where they kept their treasure.
See also: open
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

open sesame

An effective means for achieving a desired goal. The term comes from the story about Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves (The Arabian Nights Entertainments, ca. 1375), in which Ali Baba uses the words “Open, Sesame” to open the door of the robbers’ den. By 1800 or so the words had become synonymous with any password. For example, Sir Walter Scott wrote in a letter to Lord Dalkeith (Feb. 11, 1806), “Your notoriety becomes a talisman—an ‘Open Sesame’ before which everything gives way.”
See also: open
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
At present we have no control over immigration, no control over legal decisions made in A degree is certainly not an open sesame to a good job Paul Routledge Page 6 our courts as they are overturned by Euro judges.
He presided over deeply unpopular bungled reforms which heralded rising waiting lists, 20billion [pounds sterling] cuts to services, job losses to thousands of nurses and other health workers, installed an expensive, needless bureaucracy and announced an open sesame to the private firms which put profit before patient care.'
Is open access equivalent to an Open Sesame or is it opening Pandora's Box?
It is an open sesame to untold riches as Mike Weir, school winner two years ago, proved when he picked up the $1m first prize at Valderrama earlier this month.
For Mister, far from making him feel badly, his wife's passivity was an open sesame to even more abuse.
Colin Brown, managing director of Cinesite, explains: "It's an open sesame for guys in Hollywood to work with creative people on the other side of the world without moving from their offices.