lurch

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be left in the lurch

To be left or abandoned without assistance in a particularly awkward, difficult, or troublesome situation. (Sometimes written as "left in a lurch.") I'll really be left in the lurch if the manager decides to quit before this project is finished. Janet was left in a lurch organizing her kid's birthday party when her husband decided to go on a weekend getaway with his friends.
See also: left, lurch

leave (one) in the lurch

To leave or abandon one without assistance in a particularly awkward, difficult, or troublesome situation. The manager will really leave me in the lurch if he decides to quit before this project is finished. When Janet's husband decided to go on a weekend getaway with his friends, he left her in the lurch organizing her kid's birthday party.
See also: leave, lurch

in the lurch

In a particularly awkward, difficult, or troublesome situation. I'll really be left in the lurch if the manager decides to quit before this project is finished. Janet was left in the lurch organizing her kid's birthday party when her husband decided to go on a weekend getaway with his friends.
See also: lurch

lurch toward (someone or something)

To move toward someone or something abruptly and in a staggering, erratic, or unsteady manner. The drunken man lurched at the door as he went to leave, nearly collapsing on the floor in the process. We kept lurching at one another as the bock rocked violently in the waves.
See also: lurch, toward

lurch at (someone or something)

To move toward someone or something abruptly and in a staggering, erratic, or unsteady manner. The drunken man lurched toward the door as he went to leave, nearly collapsing on the floor in the process. We kept lurching toward one another as the bock rocked violently in the waves.
See also: lurch

lurch forward

To move forward abruptly, jerkily, or joltingly. Suddenly, Tom lurched forward and ran to the railing so he could vomit over the side of the ship. The train lurched forward, and my coffee spilled all over my lap as a result.
See also: forward, lurch

leave someone in the lurch

Fig. to leave someone waiting for or anticipating your actions. Where were you, John? You really left me in the lurch. I didn't mean to leave you in the lurch. I thought we had canceled our meeting.
See also: leave, lurch

lurch at someone or something

 and lurch toward someone Or something
to sway or turn quickly toward someone or something. Todd lurched at the door and got it open just as the guard saw him. Bill lurched toward the ship's rail and hung on.
See also: lurch

lurch forward

to jerk or sway forward. The car lurched forward and shook us around. When the train lurched forward, we were pushed back into our seats.
See also: forward, lurch

leave in the lurch

Abandon or desert someone in difficult straits. For example, Jane was angry enough to quit without giving notice, leaving her boss in the lurch. This expression alludes to a 16th-century French dice game, lourche, where to incur a lurch meant to be far behind the other players. It later was used in cribbage and other games, as well as being used in its present figurative sense by about 1600.
See also: leave, lurch

leave someone in the lurch

COMMON If someone leaves you in the lurch, they put you in a difficult situation by suddenly going away or stopping helping you. My secretary left me in the lurch last month and I haven't found a replacement yet. The airline has shut down, leaving thousands of ticket holders in the lurch. Note: In the card game cribbage, a player is left in a position known as the lurch when an opponent has scored 51 points before the player has managed to either score 31 points or move their peg around the first corner of the board that is used to keep the score.
See also: leave, lurch, someone

leave someone in the lurch

leave an associate or friend abruptly and without assistance or support when they are in a difficult situation.
Lurch as a noun meaning ‘a state of discomfiture’ dates from the mid 16th century but it is now used only in this idiom.
1987 Eileen Dunlop The House on the Hill What have Gilmores ever done but leave her in the lurch? Poor Jane, she just can't run the risk of being hurt again.
See also: leave, lurch, someone

leave somebody in the ˈlurch

(informal) leave somebody who is in a difficult situation and needs your help: You can’t resign now and leave us all in the lurch. It wouldn’t be fair.
See also: leave, lurch, somebody

in the lurch

In a difficult or embarrassing position.
See also: lurch

leave in the lurch, to

To abandon or desert someone in a difficult position. This seemingly slangy modern term dates from the sixteenth century and is believed to come from a French dicing game called lourche, similar to backgammon. To incur a lurch at first meant to be left far behind, a meaning that survived in several other games, including cribbage. By the early seventeenth century, however, the expression had been transferred to any kind of abandonment, and was so used in Richard Tarton’s Jests (1611): “Ile leave him in the lurch and shift for my selves.”
See also: leave
References in periodicals archive ?
They said: 'The boat was travelling at full speed when it suddenly lurched, throwing the owner and his younger daughter out of the boat.
Dr Salim Verjee was fatally injured when the car lurched forward just moments after the lad had got behind the wheel for a lesson with his brother.
TORY leader David Cameron lurched to the right last night as he went soft on taxes for the rich and played the immigration card.
I tried to stay calm but every time I moved my car lurched forward.
Mr Buchanan, 45, and Holly were thrown overboard when the vessel suddenly lurched while travelling at full speed, a probe by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) found.
SNP leader John Swinney yesterday had the cheek to claim the Labour Party has lurched to the right.
As the Boeing 737 for Berlin dived 3,000ft and lurched wildly, its captain Heinz-Dieter Kallbach grappled with the madman bodybuilder.