all over but the shouting

Idioms & Phrases

all over but the shouting

The outcome is a certainty, as in When Jim hit the ball over the fence, it was all over but the shouting. The term's first use in print, in 1842, was by Welsh sportswriter Charles James Apperley, but some authorities believe it originated even earlier in the United States for a close political race. Today it is applied to any contest. A common British version is all over bar the shouting.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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