cover the waterfront

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cover the waterfront

To be thorough and comprehensive in what is presented or dealt with. This thesis will attempt to cover the waterfront of English Law from 1950 to the present.
See also: cover, waterfront
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

cover the waterfront

to deal with every detail concerning a specific topic. Her talk really covered the waterfront. By the time she finished, I knew much more than I wanted to know.
See also: cover, waterfront
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

cover the waterfront

mainly AMERICAN
If you cover the waterfront, you include or deal with a very wide range of things, or every aspect of something. Moving full-time into TV presenting, Tyler has covered the waterfront from current affairs programmes and documentaries to daytime chat shows.
See also: cover, waterfront
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

cover the waterfront

cover every aspect of something. North American informal
1999 Tony Parsons Man and Boy And I suddenly realised how many father figures Luke has, father figures who seem to cover the waterfront of parental responsibilities.
See also: cover, waterfront
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

cover the waterfront

To treat, examine, or include a full range of things: a book that covers the waterfront on starting your own business.
See also: cover, waterfront
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

cover the waterfront, to

To include or comprise everything about something, to leave nothing out. Why this American colloquialism should use “waterfront” to mean everything about some subject is a mystery: for example, “This American history course begins with Columbus and ends with the last election—it really covers the waterfront.”
See also: cover, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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