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back to square one

Slang definitions & phrases for back to square one

back to square one

adverb phrase

Returned to the starting point, usually having wasted a great deal of effort; no farther ahead: Which means we're basically back to square one

Related Terms

go back to square one

[1960s+ British; origin uncertain, perhaps fr one of various board games]


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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