by a long shot

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English[edit]

Prepositional phrase[edit]

by a long shot

  1. (idiomatic, usually with a negative) By a wide margin; indicates a very big difference or disparity.
    He couldn't keep up with me, not by a long shot.
    He speaks better than he writes, by a long shot.
    • 1883, Mark Twain, Life on the Mississippi,
      'Yes, I do recognize it now. It is the most wonderful thing I ever heard of; by a long shot the most wonderful--and unexpected.'
    • 1913, Jack London, The Valley of the Moon,
      Well, he won't find Billy Roberts a sissy by a long shot.
    • 1920, Sinclair Lewis, Main Street,
      See here: You KNOW you feel superior to folks. You're not as bad as I say, but you're not as good as you say--not by a long shot! What's the reason you're so superior?

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