in for a penny, in for a pound

Idioms & Phrases

in for a penny, in for a pound

Once involved, one must not stop at half-measures. For example, All right, I'll drive you all the way therein for a penny, in for a pound. This term originally meant that if one owes a penny one might as well owe a pound, and came into American use without changing the British monetary unit to dollar. [Late 1600s] For a synonym, see hanged for a sheep.

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