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Related to crux: crux of the matter

the crux of the matter

The most important, central, or fundamental essence or elements of an issue, problem, or matter at hand. Thank you all for attending this staff meeting. Before we get to the crux of the matter, I'd like to assure each of you that your jobs are secure. Here's the crux of the matter, Bill. We feel like your performance has really been slipping recently.
See also: crux, matter, of
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*the crux of the matter

 and *the root of the matter;
See also: crux, matter, of
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

crux of the matter

Also, heart of the matter. The basic, central or critical point of an issue. For example, In this trial the bloodstains represent the crux of the matter, or We think the second clause is the heart of the matter. Although crux is Latin for "cross," in English it means "difficulty" or "puzzle," and it is from the latter that this expression is thought to be derived. The variant employs heart in the sense of "a vital part" (as it is in the body). The first term dates from the late 1800s, the variant from the early 1500s.
See also: crux, matter, of
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.

crux of the matter, the

The essential, pivotal point of an issue. The word “crux” came into English from Latin unchanged except in meaning; in Latin crux means “cross,” specifically the kind used in crucifixions and other executions. The English word “crux,” on the other hand, also signifies a difficulty or puzzle. This meaning, some writers believe, stems from the crossing of the two lines that make up a cross, which is also called a knot or node, whence the transfer to a “knotty problem.” Songwriter John Lennon, of Beatles fame, punned on the cliché in The Fingeltoad Resort: “That seems to be the crutch of the matter.”
See also: crux, of
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
"We'll give full voice to disagreements within the church and the faithful," said Crux editor Teresa Hanafin.
With the support of the athletes, Crux began working on a new, ergonomic helmet design, utilising new CAD methods and taking 3D laser scans of each individual, to ensure an accurate fit.
Crux Biomedical plans FDA submission in January and US approval in 2012.
The purchase consideration comprises 251.28m shares of Caperio, which will give Crux's shareholders a 25% stake in the combined group.
In the epilogue in the paperback edition, Murtagh speaks of how, "after being upgraded from visitor to one-of-the-boys status, my place in the local hierarchy was low." The crux of the difficulty is competency in language which, Murtagh claims, is a double-edged sword.
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW) comment letter calls for a "fundamental change in implementation approach," stating, "the crux of the issue is that management should not be remade in the image of the regulators and auditors ...
Yet the crux of the novel is very much a coming-of-age story as we watch these adolescents come to grips with their situations.
At the crux of the problem was a server containing alumni information that was supposed to be off-line.
THE crux of the matter with Craig Bellamy is that we need pace at the right price and he fits the bill and budget (as long as he behaves himself!)
Through letters, words, classroom visits, technology and monthly educational house-party coffee-klatches, his near constant contact with Spokane's students, parents and staff hit the crux of Spokane's needs and wants for the kids in his district.
What happens if we consider her figures in light of Rodin's Monument to Balzac, 1891-98, a crux of modernism?
The central problem is not any particular government policy, Shortt writes, but rather "the error of transferring responsibility for education from parents and church to the government." And that is the crux of the whole matter: education will never improve until parents take back full responsibility for their children's education.
That mysterious, magical je ne sais quoi--ness is the unprovable crux of Intelligent Design.