Cut and dried


      • something that is already decided or settled
        Refers to a situation or issue that is already clear, straightforward, and not open to debate or discussion

      • discourage someone
        Advise against engaging in a particular activity or task, cautioning that it will not result in any positive outcome or benefit

      • predictable
        Describes something that is easily anticipated or expected because it follows a standard or routine pattern

    Examples of Cut and dried

    • The detective presented a cut and dried theory about the robbery, citing fingerprint evidence and eyewitness accounts.

      In this example, the phrase "cut and dried" is used to describe a theory that is straightforward, well-established, and lacking in ambiguity. The detective's theory is presented as being clear-cut and undisputed, based on concrete evidence.

    • After weeks of deliberation, the board of directors presented a cut and dried decision about the company's future direction.

      Here, the idiom is used to describe a decision that is unambiguous, definitive, and without any uncertain elements. The decision that the board of directors presented is described as being complete and final, without any ambiguity or room for interpretation.

    • The results of the scientific study were cut and dried, with the data supporting the hypothesis unequivocally.

      In this example, the phrase "cut and dried" is used to describe data that is unambiguous and leaves little room for doubt or interpretation. The study's results are described as being clear-cut and conclusive, supporting the hypothesis without any ambiguity.

    • The debate between the candidates was cut and dried, with each side presenting well-rehearsed and uncompromising arguments.

      This example uses the idiom to describe a debate that is straightforward, with each side presenting arguments that are unambiguous and lacking in nuance. The debate is described as being clear-cut, with each candidate presenting well-prepared arguments that are uncompromising and without any ambiguity.

    • The negotiations between the two companies have become cut and dried, with both parties unwilling to compromise on their initial positions.

      This means that the discussions have become very straightforward and predictable, with no room for negotiation or flexibility in the proposals being put forward.

    • The proposal put forward by the committee was cut and dried, with little scope for alteration or modification.

      This implies that the proposal was very clear and well-defined, leaving no room for interpretation or adjustment.

    • The script for the film was cut and dried, with no deviations from the original plot.

      This shows that the storyline of the movie was very structured and rigid, without any deviations or surprises.

    • The case being presented in court was cut and dried, with little room for argument or debate.

      This indicates that the evidence being presented was very clear and conclusive, leaving no doubt about the outcome of the case.


    The idiom "cut and dried" can be used to refer to something that is already decided or settled, as well as to advise against engaging in a particular activity or task. It can also describe something that is predictable and easily anticipated.

    Origin of "Cut and dried"

    The origin of the idiom "cut and dried" can be traced back to the process of cutting and drying herbs. When herbs are cut and dried, they become ready for use and are no longer subject to change. This process led to the figurative meaning of something being clear and settled, which is how the idiom came to be used in its current form. Over time, the idiom has evolved to encompass the additional meanings of predictability and discouragement. Its origins in the literal process of preparing herbs highlight the idea of something being finalized and unchangeable.