might and main, with

Idioms & Phrases

might and main, with

Strenuously, vigorously, as in She pulled on the rope with all her might and main. This expression is redundant, since the noun main also means "strength" or "power." It survives only in this phrase, which may also be dying out. [Late 1200s]

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