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mano a mano

[Spanish mah-naw ah mah-naw; English mah-noh uh mah-noh] /Spanish ˈmɑ nɔ ɑ ˈmɑ nɔ; English ˈmɑ noʊ ə ˈmɑ noʊ/
noun, plural manos a manos
[Spanish mah-naws ah mah-naws; English mah-noh uh mah-nohz, mah-nohz uh mah-nohz] /Spanish ˈmɑ nɔs ɑ ˈmɑ nɔs; English ˈmɑ noʊ ə ˈmɑ noʊz, ˈmɑ noʊz ə ˈmɑ noʊz/ (Show IPA),
for 1, 2.
(italics) Spanish. a corrida in which two matadors alternate in fighting two or three bulls each.
a direct confrontation or conflict; head-on competition; duel.
being or resembling such a confrontation:
a mano a mano struggle in the courtroom between two superb criminal lawyers.
in direct competition or rivalry:
a brash newcomer in tennis taking on the reigning champion mano a mano.
Origin of mano a mano
< Spanish: on an equal footing, without advantage (to either of two contestants); literally, hand to hand Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Word Origin and History for mano a mano

1970s, Spanish, literally "hand-to-hand."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for mano a mano

mano a mano

noun phrase

A hand-to-hand fight or duel: Hemingway's subject was the mano a mano between Spain's two leading matadors/ a literary mano a mano with some good books as weapons

[1970s+; fr Spanish, ''hand-to-hand'']

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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