one fell swoop


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one fell swoop

A single decisive or powerful action. When the economy crashed, thousands lost their jobs, their homes, and their pensions in one fell swoop. With one fell swoop, the military junta arrested the prime minister, executed its enemies in parliament, and assumed total control of the country.
See also: fell, one, swoop

one fell swoop

A single and rapid act. “Fell” comes from an Old English word for frightful and “swoop” describes the way hawks and other birds of prey drop out of the sky to capture their victims. Accordingly, something that is done “in one fell swoop,” whether or not it is awful, happens with no hesitation. Shakespeare coined the phrase in Macbeth, where the character Macduff laments the murders of his wife and children with “What, all my pretty chick- ens and their dam / At one fell swoop?”
See also: fell, one, swoop
References in classic literature ?
It was delightful to be rid of Seesaw's hateful presence; but otherwise the loss of several playmates at one fell swoop made rather a gap in Riverboro's "younger set," and Rebecca was obliged to make friends with the Robinson baby, he being the only long-clothes child in the village that winter.
Matthew was covered with confusion at finding her there at all; and those bangles completely wrecked his wits at one fell swoop.
I invested the whole of my capital, at one fell swoop, in advertisements, and purchased my drugs and my pill-boxes on credit.
MONEYSAVINGEXPERT said: "If you're suddenly hit with the bill for multiple shops in one fell swoop it can be a disaster financially.
It] essentially disembowels him by spinning the fan, all in one fell swoop,' said Fuller.
Why not solve these problems in one fell swoop by having a false running rail?
Erik Brooks, chair of the African-American studies program, pointed out that Western was one of the first schools to adopt such a program and that ending it would "wipe away all of that history in one fell swoop.
The statement pointed out that "were targeted tactical site gangs Daash near Baiji, in one fell swoop, which led to the destruction of the wars site for Daash, in addition to targeting the tactical site to organize Daash near Habbaniyah air strike, which led to the destruction of the wars site and car Daash".
If they had one iota of common sense they would buy out the M6 Toll road and solve the traffic problems around Birmingham in one fell swoop.
David McKenna bagged a brace as the Ochilview outfit moved from second bottom to seventh in one fell swoop.
But what the flights search also does is show them in a huge graph so you can look weeks or months ahead in one fell swoop to see the cheapest fares.
CEO Gavin Darby said : 'What we've been working on is a strategy to take away in one fell swoop the three big issues that have over-burdened our company; uncertainty over bread, the scale of our debt and the scale of our commitment to the pension scheme.
I have a plan that in one fell swoop will change all this and improve everyone's health at the same time - pedestrianise the whole of Dubai.
From genetic research that shows how abnormal physiological functioning lends to criminal activities to how killers experience conditions that lend to violence, this covers social, legal, scientific, health, and ethical issues in one fell swoop, and is recommended for college-level science, health and social issues holdings alike.
What should have been a celebratory season for 27 people mowed down in one fell swoop in the Connecticut mayhem, of which two thirds were children, is once again a grim reminder of the gun-toting madness that has engulfed the American nation