A word in edgeways


      • to be able to speak or contribute to a conversation
        To have a chance to speak or share one's thoughts amidst a lively or crowded discussion or debate

      • to be able to understand or comprehend something
        To have the opportunity to gain insight or knowledge about a topic or situation

    Examples of A word in edgeways

    • In the crowded room, she managed to get a word in edgeways and explained her idea to the boss.

      This idiom refers to the difficulty of speaking in a crowded or noisy environment. The phrase "in edgeways" means making progress or finding a way to speak, even when others are talking loudly or interrupting. In this example, the woman was able to speak briefly and share her idea with the boss, despite the distractions around her.2. Pulling out all the stops

    • The company pulled out all the stops to impress the potential investors during the presentation.

      This idiom means doing everything possible or going to great lengths to achieve a desired outcome. In this example, the company went above and beyond to make a strong impression on the investors, perhaps by presenting their best products, hiring experts to speak, or using other resources to make the presentation as impressive as possible.3. Piece of cake

    • The final exam was a piece of cake compared to the midterm.

      This idiom means easy or simple. In this example, the speaker is saying that the final exam was much easier than the midterm, perhaps because they studied harder or were better prepared for the final.4. Raining cats and dogs

    • It's been raining cats and dogs all day.

      This idiom means raining heavily or very hard. The phrase "cats and dogs" is used to describe a heavy rainfall, perhaps because it sounds like many animals are falling from the sky during a heavy rainstorm.5. Spill the beans

    • I accidentally spilled the beans about the surprise party.

      This idiom means revealing a secret or surprise unexpectedly. In this example, the speaker accidentally shared information about the surprise party, perhaps by forgetting to keep the secret or by letting something slip in conversation.


    The idiom "a word in edgeways" is used in two different contexts, both related to communication and understanding. In the first meaning, it refers to the ability to speak or contribute to a conversation, while the second meaning refers to the opportunity to gain knowledge or understanding about a topic or situation. Both meanings suggest the importance of being able to participate and engage in communication in order to effectively convey thoughts and ideas.

    Origin of "A word in edgeways"

    The origin of this idiom is uncertain, but it is believed to have originated in the 17th century. The word "edge" in this context refers to the outer edge of a sword, which was used to cut and make precise marks. This is thought to relate to the idea of being able to insert a word into a conversation or a thought into a discussion in a precise and timely manner.

    Another theory suggests that the origin of this idiom is related to the edge of a coin, which is the thinnest part. This could symbolize the difficulty of finding space or time to contribute to a conversation, as if trying to squeeze in between the edges of the coin.

    Overall, the idiom "a word in edgeways" is commonly used in spoken language to emphasize the importance of being able to express oneself and actively participate in communication. Its origin may be related to the use of edged objects, but its meaning has evolved to encompass a broader range of contexts and situations.