wax and wane

Idioms & Phrases

wax and wane

Increase and decrease, as in size, number, strength, or intensity, as in Enrollments in these programs wax and wane from year to year. This expression alludes to the phases of the moon, with its periodic changes in size. It was first recorded in the 1300s.

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