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heavy going

1.
Also, heavy weather.
2.
Difficult, as in Tom found calculus heavy going, or It's going to be heavy weather for us from here on. The first expression originally referred to a road or path that was hard to negotiate; the variant alludes to bad weather at sea. [ Mid-1800s ]
3.
make heavy weather of. Make hard work or a fuss over something, especially unnecessarily. For example, They made heavy weather of the differences between their proposals, which actually seemed much alike. This use of weather likens a commotion to a storm. [ Mid-1900s ]
The American HeritageĀ® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright Ā© 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Examples from the Web for heavy going
Historical Examples
  • It was heavy going, for at every step our feet sank deep in the leaves.

    The Man with the Clubfoot Valentine Williams
  • It was heavy going in that thin air; but she held to it determinedly.

    The Silent Barrier Louis Tracy
  • The snow was deep and the sledge teams had heavy going at first.

  • Exhausted by the heavy going of the marsh, he had dropped for cover and rest.

  • No craft, even a sixty-footer built for speed, finds her speed lines a thing of comfort in heavy going.

    Poor Man's Rock Bertrand W. Sinclair
  • Allowance of course had to be made for the weariness of the men and the heavy going.

  • The water was pouring down the hill sides, every deep deer track was a torrent, and it was heavy going through the marshes.

  • Underfoot, the sand made a treacherous pathway; carriers and men alike found it heavy going.

    Despoilers of the Golden Empire Gordon Randall Garrett
  • Wiek after all turned out to be hardly more than five miles from Arkona, but it was heavy going.

  • The walk to Pontresina is the coldest and darkest of winter walks, and the snow made it heavy going.

    The Dark Tower Phyllis Bottome

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