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false start

Sports. a premature start by one or more of the contestants, as in a swimming or track event, necessitating calling the field back to start again.
a failure to begin an undertaking successfully.
Origin of false start


[fawls-stahrt] /ˈfɔlsˈstɑrt/
verb (used without object), Sports.
to leave the starting line or position too early and thereby necessitate repeating the signal to begin a race.
1805-15 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for false start
  • He had made another total misconception of life,-another inconceivable false start.
  • There was then a period of silence, followed by a false start.
  • The sumps are designed to collect diesel fuel from an electric power generation turbine immediately after a false start.
  • The court's consideration of the settlement agreement and counsel's fees, however, was subject to a false start.
  • After one false start, the parties filed a stipulation to submit the case to binding arbitration.
  • Different meeting achieve of the bill from strain and false start.
Idioms and Phrases with false start

false start

A wrong beginning, as in After several false starts she finally managed to write the first chapter. The term originated in racing, where it refers to beginning a race before the starting signal has been given. The expression was soon transferred to other kinds of failed beginning. [ Early 1800s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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