at one blow


1 [bloh]
a sudden, hard stroke with a hand, fist, or weapon: a blow to the head.
a sudden shock, calamity, reversal, etc.: His wife's death was a terrible blow to him.
a sudden attack or drastic action: The invaders struck a blow to the south.
at one blow, with a single act: He became wealthy and famous at one blow. Also, at a blow.
come to blows, to begin to fight, especially to engage in physical combat: They came to blows over the referee's ruling.
strike a blow, to hit.
strike a blow for, to further or advance the cause of: to strike a blow for civil rights.
without striking a blow, without a battle or contest: The military coup was accomplished without striking a blow.

1425–75; late Middle English blaw, northern form representing later blowe; akin to Old High German bliuwan, Gothic bliggwan to beat

1. buffet, thump, thwack, rap, slap, cuff, box, beat, knock. 1, 2. Blow, stroke, hit, slap refer to a sudden or forceful impact, but differ in their literal and figurative uses. Blow emphasizes the violence of the impact and, figuratively, adverse fortune: a blow from a hammer; a blow to one's hopes. Stroke emphasizes movement as well as impact; it indicates precision or, figuratively, either good fortune or sudden or unexpected pain or misfortune: the stroke of a piston; a stroke of luck, of lightning; a paralytic stroke. Hit, in its current uses, emphasizes the successful result of a literal or figurative blow, impact, or impression, for example in baseball, social life, the theater: a two-base hit; to make a hit with someone; a smash hit. Slap, a blow with the open hand or with something flat, emphasizes the instrument with which the blow is delivered and, often, the resulting sound; figuratively, it connotes an unfriendly or sarcastic statement, action, or attitude: Her coldness was like a slap in the face; the slap of a beaver's tail on the water. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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World English Dictionary
blow1 (bləʊ)
vb (often foll by up, down, in, etc) , blows, blowing, blew, blown, blowed
1.  (of a current of air, the wind, etc) to be or cause to be in motion
2.  (intr) to move or be carried by or as if by wind or air: a feather blew in through the window
3.  to expel (air, cigarette smoke, etc) through the mouth or nose
4.  to force or cause (air, dust, etc) to move (into, in, over, etc) by using an instrument or by expelling breath
5.  (intr) to breathe hard; pant
6.  (sometimes foll by up) to inflate with air or the breath
7.  (intr) (of wind, a storm, etc) to make a roaring or whistling sound
8.  to cause (a whistle, siren, etc) to sound by forcing air into it, as a signal, or (of a whistle, etc) to sound thus
9.  (tr) to force air from the lungs through (the nose) to clear out mucus or obstructing matter
10.  to explode, break, or disintegrate completely: the bridge blew down in the gale
11.  electronics to burn out (a fuse, valve, etc) because of excessive current or (of a fuse, valve, etc) to burn out
12.  slang blow a fuse to lose one's temper
13.  (intr) (of a whale) to spout water or air from the lungs
14.  (tr) to wind (a horse) by making it run excessively
15.  to cause (a wind instrument) to sound by forcing one's breath into the mouthpiece, or (of such an instrument) to sound in this way
16.  slang (intr) jazz to play in a jam session
17.  (intr) (of flies) to lay eggs (in)
18.  to shape (glass, ornaments, etc) by forcing air or gas through the material when molten
19.  chiefly (Scot), (Austral), (NZ) (intr) to boast or brag
20.  slang (tr)
 a.  to spend (money) freely
 b.  (US) to treat or entertain
21.  slang (tr) to use (an opportunity) ineffectively
22.  slang to go suddenly away (from)
23.  slang (tr) to expose or betray (a person or thing meant to be kept secret)
24.  slang (US) (tr) to inhale (a drug)
25.  slang (intr) to masturbate
26.  informal another word for damn : I'll be blowed; blow it!
27.  draughts another word for huff
28.  blow hot and cold to vacillate
29.  blow a kiss, blow kisses to kiss one's hand, then blow across it as if to carry the kiss through the air to another person
30.  blow one's own trumpet to boast of one's own skills or good qualities
31.  slang blow someone's mind
 a.  (of a drug, esp LSD) to alter someone's mental state
 b.  esp (US), (Canadian) to astound or surprise someone
32.  informal blow one's top, blow one's stack, blow one's lid to lose one's temper
33.  the act or an instance of blowing
34.  the sound produced by blowing
35.  a blast of air or wind
36.  metallurgy
 a.  a stage in the Bessemer process in which air is blasted upwards through molten pig iron
 b.  the quantity of metal treated in a Bessemer converter
37.  mining
 a.  a rush of air into a mine
 b.  the collapse of a mine roof
38.  slang jazz a jam session
39.  a.  (Brit) a slang name for cannabis
 b.  (US) a slang name for cocaine
[Old English blāwan, related to Old Norse blǣr gust of wind, Old High German blāen, Latin flāre]

blow2 (bləʊ)
1.  a powerful or heavy stroke with the fist, a weapon, etc
2.  at one blow, at a blow by or with only one action; all at one time
3.  a sudden setback; unfortunate event: to come as a blow
4.  come to blows
 a.  to fight
 b.  to result in a fight
5.  an attacking action: a blow for freedom
6.  (Austral), (NZ) a stroke of the shears in sheep-shearing
[C15: probably of Germanic origin; compare Old High German bliuwan to beat]

blow3 (bləʊ)
vb , blows, blowing, blew, blown
1.  (intr) (of a plant or flower) to blossom or open out
2.  (tr) to produce (flowers)
3.  a mass of blossoms
4.  the state or period of blossoming (esp in the phrase in full blow)
[Old English blōwan; related to Old Frisian blōia to bloom, Old High German bluoen, Latin flōs flower; see bloom1]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

"move air," O.E. blawan "blow, breathe, make an air current; kindle; inflate; sound a wind instrument" (class VII strong verb; past tense bleow, pp. blawen), from P.Gmc. *blæ-anan (cf. O.H.G. blaen, Ger. blähen), from PIE *bhle- "to swell, blow up" (cf. L. flare "to blow"). Slang "do fellatio
on" sense is from 1933, as blow (someone) off, originally among prostitutes (cf. blow job). This usage is probably not connected to the colloquial imprecation (1781, associated with sailors, e.g. Popeye's "well, blow me down!"), which has pp. blowed. Meaning "to spend (money) foolishly and all at once" is 1890s; that of "bungle an opportunity" is from 1943.

"to bloom, blossom" (intrans.), from O.E. blowan "to flower, blossom, flourish," from P.Gmc. *blæ- (cf. O.S. bloian, O.Fris. bloia, O.H.G. bluoen, Ger. blühen), from PIE *bhle-, extended form of *bhel- (2) "to thrive, bloom" (see bole). This word is the source of the blown in full-blown.

"hard hit," mid-15c., blowe, from northern and East Midlands dialects, perhaps from M.Du. blouwen "to beat," a common Germanic word of unknown origin (cf. Ger. bleuen, Goth. bliggwan "to strike"). Influenced in English by blow (v.1).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

at one blow

see at one stroke.

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