crash the gate


Gain admittance, as to a party or concert, without being invited or without paying. For example, The concert was outdoors, but heavy security prevented anyone from crashing the gate. This term originally applied to persons getting through the gate at sports events without buying tickets. By the 1920s it was extended to being an uninvited guest at other gatherings and had given rise to the noun gatecrasher for one who did so. [Early 1900s]

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.