come away empty-handed

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come away empty-handed

To return from an experience or event without having gained anything. I worked so hard to prepare for the competition, and I still came away empty-handed, thanks to another fourth-place finish. Don't come away from the dessert table empty-handed—bring me a piece of cake!
See also: away, come
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

come away empty-handed

to return without anything. All right, go gambling. Don't come away empty-handed, though. Go to the bank and ask for the loan again. This time don't come away empty-handed.
See also: away, come
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
It's a playful journey that reaches for the outlandish at every turn, and seldom comes away empty-handed.
David comes away empty-handed but Louis and Lewis won't be singing for their supper after trip to Kingennie; Alison's more of an armchair fan; Louis gets some instruction from expert David Anderson
He finally comes away empty-handed but not disappointed.
Dettori rarely comes away empty-handed when he links up with his former boss Luca Cumani, who sent Kuster out to make a winning debut at Epsom 12 months ago.
He said: "No-one comes away empty-handed. The games are not about first past the post.