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close but no cigar

Slang definitions & phrases for close but no cigar

close but no cigar

adverb phrase

Very nearly correct; not quite the thing: One package, that was acceptable. Too many amounted to her idea of close-but-no-cigar/ If you answered George Lucas' Star Wars you're close, but no cigar

[1970s+; fr carnival feats where one gets a cigar as a prize]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with close but no cigar

close but no cigar

A narrowly missed success, as in That ball was definitely out—close but no cigar. This interjection alludes to awarding a cigar to the winner of some competition, such as hitting a target. [ ; early 1900s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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