between the devil and the deep blue sea


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Related to between the devil and the deep blue sea: between a rock and a hard place

between the devil and the deep blue sea

Facing two equally unpleasant, dangerous, or risky alternatives, when the avoidance of one ensures encountering the harm of the other. I was between the devil and the deep blue sea, for if I didn't take out another loan—and go deeper into debt—I could not pay off the debts I already owed. The police knew with certainty he had drugs in his car, so he became trapped between the devil and the deep blue sea: either lie to the police, or admit that the drugs belonged to him.
See also: and, between, blue, deep, devil, sea

devil and deep blue sea

See also: and, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

mainly BRITISH
If you are between the devil and the deep blue sea, you are in a difficult situation where the two possible courses of action or choices that you can take are equally bad. I can see you're caught between the devil and the deep blue sea — if you support your daughter, your partner will be hurt. Note: The origin of this expression is in shipping, not religion. It is unclear exactly what the `devil' was, but it is thought to have been some kind of seam or plank that was awkward and dangerous to reach, so a sailor who had to make it waterproof was in a very unsafe position, and risked falling into the water.
See also: and, between, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

caught in a dilemma; trapped between two equally dangerous alternatives.
See also: and, between, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the ˌdevil and the deep blue ˈsea

in a situation where you have to choose between two things that are equally bad: In this situation, the government finds itself caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.
See also: and, between, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

Between two equally unacceptable choices.
See also: and, between, blue, deep, devil, sea

between the devil and the deep blue sea

A choice between two evils. A term dating back to the early seventeenth century, it referred not to the devil of hellfire and brimstone but to a seam around a ship’s hull near the waterline. A sailor attempting to caulk this seam in heavy seas was in danger of falling overboard and drowning. The term was used figuratively—to mean any dilemma in which one faced danger—from that time on. It became a cliché about the middle of the eighteenth century.
See also: and, between, blue, deep, devil, sea
References in periodicals archive ?
With this assertion, barrister and refugee advocate Jessie Taylor pinpoints the premise of Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, the 2012 documentary that she produced with Melbourne-based director David Schmidt.
Here, as in Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, piracy is situated firmly in the context of work, class, and power afloat, a natural, if extreme, byproduct of the endemic conflict between captains and crews during the transition to capitalism.
Hence the term stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea.
So that French electors will in two weeks be presented with a choice between the devil and the deep blue sea. One could hardly blame them on balance for choosing the devil, as he is after all the devil they know, and while he may have been a bit slippery when it comes to financial details he is likely to be a safe pair of hands compared with someone who is almost universally recognised as a potentially dangerous extremist and demagogue, though my own view here is that Le Pen is hardly more extreme than, say, Ariel Sharon in Israel, with whom US politicians in particular have found it possible to attempt to do business with a smile, even.
``I am a man between the devil and the deep blue sea. I want him to be a huge success this season because it will mean Birmingham City are a huge success.
Torn between the devil and the deep blue sea, Sally tries her best to play the happy bride as she gets into the car with Kevin to travel to the register office.
An eco-minded fish lover who commits this little cheat sheet to memory won't be left stranded between the devil and the deep blue sea. Shauna Dineen contributed research to this story.
But we're between the devil and the deep blue sea with him, because he is rated too high and is not good enough to take on the good ones off levels."
Readers who loved Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea (Penguin, 2013/VOYA August 2013) will enjoy the sequel, with its uniquely stilted, poetic tone and slow-burn pace that enhances both sexual and horror tension.