struggle to the death

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struggle to the death

1. noun A bitter, hard-fought conflict that ends in the death of one of the participants. The battle between this lion and water buffalo truly is a struggle to the death—the victory of one ensures the demise of the other. The underground competition features experienced fighters from all over the world engaging in struggles to the death.
2. noun An extremely difficult or serious challenge. Used hyperbolically. It was a struggle to the death getting that old lawnmower working again, but by God I did it! We knew it would be a struggle to the death negotiating the contract with their firm.
3. verb To engage in a bitter, hard-fought conflict that ends in the death of one of the participants. I know it's morbid, but one of the things I like best about nature documentaries is watching predators and their prey struggling to the death. The crime boss forced the two underlings to struggle to the death, with the winner being spared any further punishment.
See also: death, struggle

struggle to the death

 
1. Lit. a bitter struggle ending in death. The wolf and the elk fought in a struggle to the death.
2. Fig. a serious problem with someone or something; a difficult challenge. I had a terrible time getting my car started. It was a struggle to the death, but it finally started.
See also: death, struggle
References in periodicals archive ?
Hafez believed that he was doomed to struggle to death and accepted it out of his belief that it was God's will.