tooth and nail


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tooth and nail

Furiously or fiercely; with all of one's strength and effort. I know my brother has fought tooth and nail to be re-elected, so his victory tonight is certainly well earned. The elite troops have been placed around the perimeter to defend the palace tooth and nail from rioters.
See also: and, nail, tooth

tooth and nail, fight/with

Fight vigorously, with all one’s resources. The analogy to biting and scratching was drawn by the sixteenth century and has been used ever since for fierce contention or, by extension, effort. Dickens used it in David Copperfield (1850): “I go at it tooth and nail.”
See also: and, fight, tooth
References in periodicals archive ?
Malcolm Starr, a campaigner for Martin, said: "He will fight tooth and nail.
And he vowed to fight any such move "tooth and nail".
While African-Americans have had to battle tooth and nail for their share of a multibillion dollar industry, black-owned businesses have made an indelible mark on how we entertain ourselves.
In middle age, Billy Bragg is still a political firebrand, fighting tooth and nail for the causes he believes in - warning that to regard him as some sort of cuddly comedian is a mistake.
"I think they'll be fighting tooth and nail to keep him because he''s a hard man to replace," said Cahill.
MODEL Sophie Anderton and former It girl Tara Palmer-Tomkinson are fighting tooth and nail over a lucrative modelling contract.
'As governor, he fought gay marriage tooth and nail, and now he's on the gay social circuit,' gay activist Steven Goldstein told The Star-Ledger of Newark [N.J.]....
A PLEDGE to fight tooth and nail for a fair deal for British farmers in EU subsidy reforms has been made by Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary Margaret Beckett.
Developer Nino Vendome--who has fought tooth and nail to push the project through--is determined to build the original project somewhere else on the west side of Manhattan, however.