bitter end


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the bitter end

1. The point of completion or conclusion, even though it may be difficult, unpleasant, or take a long time to reach. Possibly of nautical origin, referring to the "bitts" on a dock to which a ship's ropes are moored. I'm not really enjoying this book, but I always make a point of sticking with a novel till the bitter end.
2. The final or most critical extremity, such as death or total defeat. We might not have a chance of winning today, but we have to give it our all until the bitter end! My father stayed beside my dying mother's bed till the bitter end.
See also: bitter, end
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

bitter end

The last extremity; also, death or ruin. For example, I'm supporting the union's demands to the bitter end, or Even though they fight a lot, I'm sure Mom and Dad will stay together to the bitter end . The source of this term may have been nautical, a bitter being a turn of a cable around posts, or bitts, on a ship's deck, and the bitter end meaning "the part of the cable that stays inboard." Thus, when a rope is paid out to the bitter end, no more remains. [Mid-1800s]
See also: bitter, end
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.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Critique: An extraordinary work of meticulous research, "To the Bitter End: Appomattox, Bennett Place, and the Surrenders of the Confederacy" is a welcome and highly recommended addition to the growing library of Civil War literature by historian and Civil War expert Robert M.
"This is a perfect location for The Bitter End - it has a huge student population close by, with city centre apartments and shops a stones throw away.
BITTER END: Kyle Eastmond (above) looks set for a premature exit from Saints, who may target Michael Dobson (left, in centre) as his replacement
I think it was a call for the movement to unite, even stronger than before, and fight until the bitter end.
The past still performing itself, tragedy pushed to its bitter end. The
"Let It Be: My Daughter's Legacy" is a mother coming to terms with her daughter's death from brain cancer and her resolve to fight her cancer to the bitter end. An inspiring story meant to help mothers coping with the diseases that their children face, "Let It Be" is a memoir that is sure to give strength to many a parent and their child during dark times.
Ms Kennedy said she feared Mr Brown would lead Labour to its "bitter end".
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam conceded defeat Sunday in their war against Colombo's government, saying the conflict has reached ''a bitter end,'' pro-Tamil website TamilNet reported.
Hatton's reign as light-welterweight world champion came to a bitter end at the MGM Grand Garden Arena as Pacquiao floored his opponent twice in the first round before ending the contest with left hook late in the second.
Israeli defence minister Ehud Barak has promised a "war to the bitter end" to defeat the militant Hamas group which controls the Gaza Strip.
The famed Russian River Brewing Company (707/545-2337) in Santa Rosa, esteemed for its Belgian-style ales, offers a dozen more foamy reasons to taste the bitter end of wine country.
Woe betide the newcomer who makes the mistake of regarding the average village green game as anything other than a contest to the bitter end.
Our faith, after all, tells us that death, rather than an enemy to be fought to the bitter end, is the necessary path to fullness of life.
In Smith's eruption model, these stars would expel some material a few thousand years before they die as supernovas rather than stockpiling all of it until the bitter end. That's because the proposed eruptions don't depend on whether the star has made heavy elements.
But some conservative Christians stuck with Reed until the bitter end. On election night, Sadie Fields, head of the state CC unit, told the Journal-Constitution, "I'm obviously disappointed.