the long and the short of it


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the long and (the) short of it

The main idea or facts of something. That's the long and the short of it. If you want more details, you'll have to ask Laura. The long and short of it is that Kyle is quitting, so we need to fill his position fast.
See also: and, long, of, short

the long and the short of it

all that can or need be said.
1999 Tim Lott White City Blue His mother takes a lot of looking after, his wage is worse than Nodge's, and the long and short of it is he hasn't got a pot to piss in.
See also: and, long, of, short

the long and the short of it

The substance or gist: You can look on the front page of the paper for the long and the short of it.
See also: and, long, of, short

long and the short of it/the matter, the

The essence of the matter; in a nutshell. This expression, sometimes reversed (that is, the short and the long of something), dates from the fourteenth century. Shakespeare preferred the reversed form (Henry V, 3.2; The Merry Wives of Windsor, 2.1), but by the end of the seventeenth century long nearly always preceded short.
See also: and, long, of, short