give it one's best shot

(redirected from best shot)

give it (one's) best shot

To put forth one's best effort in an attempt to do or accomplish something. Henry gave it his best shot, but the board still denied his proposal.
See also: give, shot
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

give it one's best shot

Make one's hardest or most enthusiastic attempt, as in I don't know if I can do it, but I'll give it my best shot. This expression employs shot in the sense of "attempt," a usage dating from the mid-1700s.
See also: give, shot
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

give it one's best shot, to

To try one’s hardest; to expend optimum effort. Originally a military term, best shot in the sixteenth century denoted the soldiers who could most accurately shoot the enemy, according to William Safire. However, the word shot also had meant an attempt or a try from the mid-eighteenth century on, casting some doubt on this and other etymologies, which trace the term to billiards and boxing. In any event, in the twentieth century it became commonly used in politics (“The candidate was willing to give it her best shot”), as well as in other contexts. David Baldacci had it in Hour Game (2004): “‘If you can wake them up. . . .’—‘We’ll give it our best shot,’ said King.”
See also: give, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in classic literature ?
Let us go out and drink to the very good health of Monsieur Tarzan in some of old Plancon's unparalleled absinth; not forgetting that the Count de Coude is one of the best swordsmen in Paris, and by far the best shot in all France."
He is in perfect health, and he is the best shot among us.
'I saw you do it--I observed you pick him out--I noticed you, as you raised your piece to take aim; and I will say this, that the best shot in existence could not have done it more beautifully.
He was the best shot in India, and I expect that there are few better in London.
I knew exactly what I was doing, for I knew of the existence of this remarkable gun, and I knew also that one of the best shots in the world would be behind it.
And then it was, with that little life in danger, that I made the best shot I have ever made in my life!
He was one of the best shots in England, and, for a heavy man, one of the best riders; indeed, he and Crawley had been rivals when the latter was in the Army.
We had scored a few "long singles," but our "best shots" had gone "straight to hand," and we were "playing a deuced slow game." Therefore we needed a new partner--and the metaphor failed Raffles.
"I hope we hold our own we're batters and I hope we give it our best shot despite being thin on the bowling line."
'Coach [Nash Racela] said in the beginning of the game to look for the best shot possible.'
Chris Evans quit Top Gear claiming "I gave it my best shot but that's not enough".
CHRIS Evans has quit Top Gear after just one series, saying his best shot was "not enough".
Chris Evans - sometimes your best shot is not enough
"I can understand when you get to a certain age, you think: 'I've given it my best shot.' It's 66 days away from home without pay.
And Murray is calling on his players to go out and give it their best shot.