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com•pe•ti•tion(ˌkɒm pɪˈtɪʃ ən)
- As competitive as two dogs after a bitch in heat —Anon
- Asking him to compete fairly is like asking a hungry lion to leave the lambs alone —Mike Sommer
- Competition is like sugar sprinkled on cobbler pie —Elmer Kelton
- A non-competitive businessman is like an honest crook —Elyse Sommer
- Playing tennis without keeping score is like apple pie sans la mode —Anon
the Devil take the hindmost Every man for himself; survival of the fittest; similar to the more current phrase the last one in is a rotten egg, popular among children. This expression is said to have derived from an old legend concerning the Devil’s school at Toledo where students were instructed in the art of black magic. Each year, as a sort of test, the graduating class was made to run through an underground hall. The last one, if caught by the Devil, would then become his servant. The phrase was used as early as 1611.
give [someone] a run for [his] money To provide keen and tough competition, thereby inciting one’s opponent to go all out, to “give it all he’s got” to win. Dating from the 19th century, this expression was originally racing slang. The then current have a run for one’s money was suggestive of a determined struggle and subsequent victory or payoff. Today to give [someone] a run for his money means to make that person work for what would otherwise have been an easy victory.
jockey for position To maneuver or compete within the ranks for an advantageous position; to manipulate or pull strings to gain a more favorable position. The allusion is to horse racing and the jockeys’ skillful maneuvering. The expression is now frequently applied to any kind of competitive maneuvering although it has been used in reference to sports since the early part of this century.
In Alberta when there was no jury, congestion was caused by lawyers jockeying for position in order to appear before the right judge. (The Times, July, 1955)
keeping up with the Joneses Trying to maintain the social standing of one’s neighbors; creating the impression that one is on an equal social or economic stratum as one’s neighbors. This expression was coined in 1913 by Arthur “Pop” Momand, a cartoonist for the New York Globe, who satirized his own social pretensions in his long-running comic strip. The surname Jones was undoubtedly picked to represent the average American of Anglo-Saxon descent.
Why … does John Doe choose to speculate on margin? … An ages-old desire to get something for nothing; keeping up with the Joneses. (E. C. Harwood, Cause and Control of Business Cycles, 1932)
rat race See FRENZIEDNESS.
take up the gauntlet To accept or undertake willingly any challenging task; to accept an offer to fight or duel. Similarly, throw down the gauntlet means to challenge one to a fight or duel. Gauntlets were the armored gloves worn by knights in medieval times. A knight wishing to joust with another would cast his gauntlet to the ground as a challenge to combat. The other knight would pick up the gauntlet to show the challenge was accepted.
Making a proclamation, that whosoever would say that King Richard was not lawfully king, he would fight with him at the utterance, and throw down his gauntlet. (Hall, Chronicles of Richard III, 1548)
throw one’s hat into the ring To enter a competition, to become a candidate for public office, to accept a challenge. This expression, dating from the mid-19th century, is said to derive from the custom of throwing a hat into the ring to signal the acceptance of a pugilist’s challenge.
When Mr. Roosevelt threw his hat into the ring the other day, he gave the signal for a contest the like of which has not been seen before in this country. (Nation, March 7, 1912)
up for grabs Open to competition; available, free. This U.S. expression made its appearance in slang dictionaries by the 1940s; it is now quite commonly used in informal writing, often in reference to positions, candidacies, etc.
Right now every position is up for grabs. Every player is going to get a shot. (Boston Globe, April, 1967)
While the phrase carries the connotation of wide-open competition, it also implies the necessity of effort and competence to attain the goal. A possible but totally conjectural origin is that up for grabs derives from the jump ball in basketball.
|Noun||1.||competition - a business relation in which two parties compete to gain customers; "business competition can be fiendish at times"|
business relation - a relation between different business enterprises
|2.||competition - an occasion on which a winner is selected from among two or more contestants|
game - a single play of a sport or other contest; "the game lasted two hours"
social event - an event characteristic of persons forming groups
bout - a contest or fight (especially between boxers or wrestlers)
championship - a competition at which a champion is chosen
chicken - a foolhardy competition; a dangerous activity that is continued until one competitor becomes afraid and stops
cliffhanger - a contest whose outcome is uncertain up to the very end
dogfight - a fiercely disputed contest; "their rancor dated from a political dogfight between them"; "a real dogfight for third place"; "a prolonged dogfight over their rival bids for the contract"
race - a contest of speed; "the race is to the swift"
tournament, tourney - a sporting competition in which contestants play a series of games to decide the winner
playoff - any final competition to determine a championship
series - (sports) several contests played successively by the same teams; "the visiting team swept the series"
field trial - a contest between gun dogs to determine their proficiency in pointing and retrieving
match - a formal contest in which two or more persons or teams compete
tournament - a series of jousts between knights contesting for a prize
race - any competition; "the race for the presidency"
spelldown, spelling bee, spelling contest - a contest in which you are eliminated if you fail to spell a word correctly
trial - (sports) a preliminary competition to determine qualifications; "the trials for the semifinals began yesterday"
|3.||competition - the act of competing as for profit or a prize; "the teams were in fierce contention for first place"|
group action - action taken by a group of people
contest - a struggle between rivals
cooperation - joint operation or action; "their cooperation with us was essential for the success of our mission"
|4.||competition - the contestant you hope to defeat; "he had respect for his rivals"; "he wanted to know what the competition was doing"|
contestant - a person who participates in competitions
comer - someone with a promising future
finalist - a contestant who reaches the final stages of a competition
scratch - a competitor who has withdrawn from competition
semifinalist - one of four competitors remaining in a tournament by elimination
street fighter - a contestant who is very aggressive and willing to use underhand methods
tier - any one of two or more competitors who tie one another
tilter - someone who engages in a tilt or joust
in competition with → en competencia con
there was keen competition for the prize → se disputó reñidamente el premio
There was fierce international competition → La concurrence internationale était rude.
competition for sth → concurrence pour qch
Competition for admission to the school is keen → Il y a beaucoup de concurrence pour entrer dans cette école.
in competition with → en concurrence avec
They are in competition with each other (two people) → Ils sont en concurrence l'un avec l'autre.; (more than two people) → Ils sont en concurrence les uns avec les autres.