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party line

[pahr-tee lahyn for 1, 2; pahr-tee lahyn for 3, 4] /ˈpɑr ti ˈlaɪn for 1, 2; ˈpɑr ti ˌlaɪn for 3, 4/
the authorized, prescribed policies and practices of a group, especially of the Communist Party, usually followed by the members without deviation; official philosophy or credo.
the guiding policy, tenets, or practices of a political party:
The judge was chosen on party lines.
a telephone line connecting the telephones of a number of subscribers by one circuit to a central office, used in some rural areas.
the boundary line separating adjoining properties.
Origin of party line
An Americanism dating back to 1825-35
Related forms
party-line, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for party line
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The party line is not drawn on belief but on race and color.

    The Bishop of Cottontown John Trotwood Moore
  • "We'll hook old Mitch on our party line, sometime, Frank," he said.

    The Planet Strappers Raymond Zinke Gallun
  • In an age when money is the only ideology – they did not adhere to the party line.

    After the Rain Sam Vaknin
  • Stud could hear the subdued exclamations from every kitchen on the party line.

    Plowing On Sunday Sterling North
  • Her new clothes from Sears Roebuck were the talk of the party line.

    Plowing On Sunday Sterling North
British Dictionary definitions for party line

party line

a telephone line serving two or more subscribers
the policies or dogma of a political party, to which all members are expected to subscribe
(mainly US) the boundary between adjoining property
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Idioms and Phrases with party line

party line

The official policy of an organization or government, as in The current party line opposes legalized abortion in all cases. This term, dating from about 1830, was originally used for a political party's official policy but in the mid-1900s was almost exclusively applied to the rigid dicta of the Soviet Communist Party. Since then it has returned to looser use.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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