beginning of the end, (this is) the

beginning of the end

1. The start of a decline. We didn't realize it at the time, but not having any interest in Valentine's Day was the beginning of the end for us—we broke up a month later. We all rushed to grandpa's bedside after his nurse warned us that it was the beginning of the end.
2. The first in a series of closing events. Senior prom is really the beginning of the end—graduation isn't that far away anymore.
See also: beginning, end, of

beginning of the end

Fig. the start of the termination of something or of someone's death. When he stopped coughing and grew still, I knew it was the beginning of the end. The enormous debt we ran up marked the beginning of the end as far as our standard of living was concerned.
See also: beginning, end, of

the beginning of the end

the event or development to which the conclusion or failure of something can be traced.
1992 H. Norman Schwartzkopf It Doesn't Take a Hero I heard about D-Day on the radio. The announcer quoted Ohio governor John Bricker's now-famous line that this was ‘the beginning of the end of the forces of evil’.
See also: beginning, end, of

the beginning of the ˈend

the first sign of something ending: The quarrel was the beginning of the end for our relationship.
See also: beginning, end, of

beginning of the end, (this is) the

The start of a disaster (ruin, defeat, fatal illness, or the like). The term was used by Shakespeare in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, but without the same meaning; it appears in the tangled prologue to the play within a play (Pyramus and Thisbe) in the last act. “I see the beginning of my end” occurs in an early seventeenth-century play, The Virgin Martyr, by Massinger and Dekker, here meaning death. The origin of the current cliché, however, is generally acknowledged to be a statement made by Talleyrand to Napoleon after losing the battle of Leipzig (1813), “C’est le commencement de la fin.” It was widely quoted thereafter, although Talleyrand may not have been the originator (he was known to borrow freely from others).
See also: beginning, of