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get to first base

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Also, reach first base.

1

Succeed in the initial phase of something; meet with preliminary approval. For example, They were delighted that they'd gotten to first base in the negotiations. This term alludes to the first base of baseball, which is the first step toward scoring a run for the batter's team. [c. 1900]

2

Reach the initial stage of sexual intimacy, such as kissing. For example, Mary is so shy that I can't even get to first base with her. [1920s]

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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.

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