it takes two to tango

it takes two to tango

Two parties involved in a certain action or situation, especially a wrong that has been committed, are usually both responsible in some way (as opposed to it being the fault or responsibility of one alone). Your son blames mine for their fight at school, but it generally takes two to tango. We won't be able to get this deal underway unless your company is willing to compromise. It takes two to tango, after all.
See also: take, tango, two

(It) takes two to tango.

Prov. Some things cannot happen by one person acting alone. Alan: You're always arguing! Stop arguing all the time. Jane: I can't argue all by myself. It takes two to tango. Fred: Did you hear? Janice got herself pregnant. Jill: Well, she didn't do it all by herself. Takes two to tango, you know.
See also: take, tango, two

it takes two to tango

The active cooperation of both parties is needed for some enterprises, as in We'll never pass this bill unless both parties work out a compromise-it takes two to tango . This expression dates from the 1920s, when the Latin American tango became a very popular dance. It was popularized by the singer Pearl Bailey in her 1952 hit song of that name written by Al Hoffman and Dick Manning.
See also: take, tango, two

it takes two to tango

If you say that it takes two to tango, you mean that in a situation or argument involving two people, both of them are responsible for it. Each side is blaming the other but it takes two to tango. I've tried everything to stop our marriage falling apart. But it takes two to tango and so far our relationship has been one-sided. Note: This is the title of a song by Hoffman and Manning, written in 1952.
See also: take, tango, two

it takes two to tango

both parties involved in a situation or argument are equally responsible for it. informal
Takes Two to Tango was the title of a 1952 song by Al Hoffman and Dick Manning .
1996 Washington Post It takes two to tango in this…business. Both your computer's video card and your monitor must be capable of a given rate to achieve it.
See also: take, tango, two

takes two to tango

phr. requires two people to do certain things. There’s no such thing as a one-sided argument. It takes two to tango.
See also: take, tango, two

it takes two to tango

Certain enterprises require the active cooperation of two participants. Although in Australia (according to Eric Partridge) this term referred to premarital sex from the 1930s on, in the United States it originated at least a decade earlier, soon after the Latin American tango became a popular dance, and was transferred to any kind of partnership activity. Its currency was aided by a song, “Takes Two to Tango” (1952, by Al Hoffman and Dick Manning), popularized by the singer Pearl Bailey. The phrase was repeated by President Ronald Reagan (Nov. 11, 1982) concerning the future of Soviet-American relations after the death of Leonid Brezhnev. Its ultimate origin may be in a much earlier proverb, it always takes two to make a bargain, appearing in John Lyly’s Euphues, the Anatomy of Wit (1579). It is often abbreviated to it takes two.
See also: take, tango, two
References in periodicals archive ?
Because it takes two to tango. For example, it takes two to tango to make the relationship between artist and record label work.
Ramirez, 34, said: "It takes two to tango but they don't necessarily have to be different sexes.
It takes two to tango and we've both been tangoing.
`I think the old adage that it takes two to tango is true here.'"
I think Monica's poor showing had to do with a lot of people of the boomer generation having enough life experience to realize that (a) everybody lies, (b) it takes two to tango or even to do the horizontal bop, and (c) in a world where truth is so shadowy, performance and the bottom line are what count.
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