defeat

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admit defeat

To yield to the opposition or accept that one is wrong in some pursuit. Well, I ran a good campaign, but it is time I admitted defeat in this election.
See also: admit, defeat

snatch defeat from the jaws of victory

To fail, lose, or be defeated despite the appearance that one would be victorious, especially due to a mistake, error, or poor judgment. (An ironic reversal of the more common "snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.") We were ahead by nearly 20 points with less than half the quarter remaining—how on earth did we manage to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory like that? The candidate has led in the polls right up to election day, but with that unfortunate remark last night, he may well have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.
See also: defeat, jaw, of, snatch, victory

snatch victory from the jaws of defeat

To win, succeed, or be victorious at the last moment, despite the apparent likelihood of failure or defeat. They were down by nearly 20 points with less than half of the last quarter remaining, but through sheer skill and perseverance they managed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. The candidate has been behind in the polls right up to election day, but with that unfortunate remark by his opponent last night, he may end up snatching victory from the jaws of defeat.
See also: defeat, jaw, of, snatch, victory

the jaws of (something)

Something, especially something unpleasant or undesirable, that very nearly comes to pass. Used especially after "snatch from." The drowning fishermen were snatched from the jaws of death by a passing cruise ship. They were down by nearly 20 points with less than half of the last quarter remaining, but through sheer skill and perseverance they managed to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.
See also: jaw, of

go down in defeat

To lose to an opponent. The team refused to go down in defeat and tied the score in the third period.
See also: defeat, down, go

go down to defeat

To lose to an opponent. The team refused to go down to defeat and tied the score in the third period.
See also: defeat, down, go

go down in defeat

 and go down to defeat
Fig. to submit to defeat; to be defeated. The team went down in defeat again. She fears going down in defeat.
See also: defeat, down, go

snatch victory from the jaws of defeat

Cliché to win at the last moment. At the last moment, the team snatched victory from the jaws of defeat with a last-second full-court basket.
See also: defeat, jaw, of, snatch, victory

the jaws of ˈdeath, deˈfeat, etc.

(literary) used to describe an unpleasant situation that almost happens: The team snatched victory from the jaws of defeat.
See also: jaw, of
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Knowing this is the key to defeating the Evil Genius.