keep (one's) powder dry


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keep (one's) powder dry

To be prepared to act with little advance notice. I know this job opportunity didn't work out, but keep your powder dry for the next one that comes along.
See also: dry, keep, powder

keep one's powder dry

Stay alert, be careful, as in Go ahead and take on the opposition, but keep your powder dry. This colloquial expression, which originally alluded to keeping gunpowder dry so that it would ignite, has been used figuratively since the 1800s but today is less common than take care.
See also: dry, keep, powder

keep your powder dry

If you keep your powder dry, you remain ready to take action if necessary. He must keep his powder dry for the really important issues. Note: The powder referred to here is gunpowder. The expression comes from a story about the English leader Oliver Cromwell. He is said to have ended a speech to his soldiers, who were about to cross a river and go into battle, by saying: `Put your trust in God, my boys, and keep your powder dry.'
See also: dry, keep, powder

keep your powder dry

be ready for action; remain alert for a possible emergency.
When his troops were about to cross a river, the English statesman and general Oliver Cromwell ( 1599–1658 ) is said to have exorted them: ‘Put your trust in God; but mind to keep your powder dry’. The powder referred to is gunpowder.
1998 Independent Instead of keeping its powder dry for the important things, New Labour's political fate is being inextricably bound up with events over which mere politicians can have no control.
See also: dry, keep, powder

keep your ˈpowder dry

(old-fashioned) remain ready for a possible emergency: The bank is not cutting interest rates at the moment, preferring to keep its powder dry in case it’s forced to cut them in the future.This comes from advice given by Oliver Cromwell to his troops when they were crossing a river before battle. Powder here refers to the gunpowder used to fire bullets.
See also: dry, keep, powder

keep (one's) powder dry

To be ready for a challenge with little warning.
See also: dry, keep, powder
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