see take by surprise.
Danger! What is the frantic origin of “hello?” (And the source of “hi” may surprise you)We use hello several times a day to greet people or attract attention. But as prevalent as the word is, “hello” is relatively new. Hello came into existence in the mid-1800s. It is an alteration of hallo, which was an alteration of holla or hollo. These words were used to attract immediate attention and demand that the listener come to a stop or cease what he …
cake by the oceanRead more in this article about some frequently asked questions and fun facts related to our definitions.
suddenly, unawares, short, aback, forthwith, sudden, unaware, unexpectedly, accidentally, carelessly, inadvertently, mistakenly, unconsciously, unintentionally, unprepared, unwittingly, abruptly, ignorantly, surprisingly, unknowingly
- by oneself,
- by reason of,
- by request,
- by rights,
- by storm,
- by the balls,
- by the board,
- by the book,
- by the bye,
- by the day
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
Examples from the Web for by surprise
Last night--when I thought to take you by-surprise--were you the leader then?Sir Mortimer|Mary Johnston