domino

(redirected from dominoes)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

domino theory

1. The political theory that, if one country or area adopts communism, then the surrounding ones will as well. The domino theory was a major concern as the Soviet Union expanded its power after World War II.
2. By extension, the idea that an event in one country will result in similar events in the surrounding countries. The string of revolutions that occurred in neighboring countries during the Arab Spring was a great example of domino theory in action.
See also: domino, theory

domino effect

A phenomenon in which an initial event causes a series of other related events to occur, much like the sequence seen in toppling dominos; a chain reaction. The convenience store's decision to stop selling tobacco products caused a domino effect throughout the industry, leading other chains to quickly follow suit. When I took one book out of the bookcase, it caused a domino effect, causing all of the others to topple over.
See also: domino, effect

a domino effect

COMMON A domino effect is a situation where one event causes a series of similar events. The accident created a domino effect, causing about 10 other bikes to crash and injuring 14 other people. Unused houses deteriorate rapidly, affecting the value of nearby homes; in a domino effect, the entire neighborhood can easily fall victim. Note: This expression was first used in the 1950s by an American political commentator to describe what some people thought would happen if one country in a region became Communist: they believed that the other countries in that area would also `fall' to the Communists. The image is of a row of upright dominoes (= small, rectangular games pieces with different numbers of dots on them); if one falls, it knocks the next one over and so on, until all of them have fallen over.
See also: domino, effect

fall like dominoes

If things fall like dominoes, they are damaged, destroyed or defeated quickly, one after the other. Since he came into the sport, the records have fallen like dominoes. Cities fell like dominoes to the rebels. Note: Other verbs, such as collapse or topple are sometimes used instead of fall. Inflation got out of control and banks started collapsing like dominoes.
See also: domino, fall, like

domino

n. a one-hundred-dollar bill. How many dominos is that going to cost?
References in classic literature ?
For some reason or other we did not begin that game of dominoes.
The house above was said to be on the identical site of a suburban retreat of the admirable Tiberius; there was the old sinner's private theatre with the tiers cut clean to this day, the well where he used to fatten his lampreys on his slaves, and a ruined temple of those ripping old Roman bricks, shallow as dominoes and ruddier than the cherry.
Besides the two men, a notched and disfigured bench, immovable from the wall, with a draught-board rudely hacked upon it with a knife, a set of draughts, made of old buttons and soup bones, a set of dominoes, two mats, and two or three wine bottles.
Ever touched the broom, or spread the mats, or rolled them up, or found the draughts, or collected the dominoes, or put my hand to any kind of work?
And, marvellous fact, to lie and stare at: Johnny had become one of a little family, all in little quiet beds (except two playing dominoes in little arm-chairs at a little table on the hearth): and on all the little beds were little platforms whereon were to be seen dolls' houses, woolly dogs with mechanical barks in them not very dissimilar from the artificial voice pervading the bowels of the yellow bird, tin armies, Moorish tumblers, wooden tea things, and the riches of the earth.
Every year on Domino Day, teams of domino lovers from around the world work together on domino sculptures where they make detailed designs for the purpose of setting it up just right so that all the dominoes in the display will fall in a chain reaction caused by toppling just one starting domino.
NEW YORK -- Following the success of telecasting poker on its network, ESPN2 will bring the game of dominoes to its viewers for the first time with the 2005 World Domino Tournament, an ESPN Deportes original production which took place November 18-20 in Las Vegas.
NEW YORK -- Following its groundbreaking effort to bring the game of dominoes to its viewers, ESPN Deportes, ESPN's Spanish-language network, has reached an exclusive agreement with the International Domino Federation to televise rights of the governing body's annual World Domino Championship as well as the federation's national and regional tournaments in the Americas through 2011.