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miss the point

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Overlook or fail to understand the essential or important part of something, as in Chris missed the point of Gwen's complaint, thinking she was opposed to the date of the next meeting. This expression employs point in the sense of “the salient portion,” a usage dating from the late 1300s.

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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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