by a long chalk

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

Referring to the habit of scoring games with chalk.

Prepositional phraseEdit

by a long chalk

  1. (Britain, informal) By far.
    • 1891, George Gissing, New Grub Street, ch. 27
      Bowring was a man of few words; he said, "Blaze away, my boy." And I tried to. But it was no use; I had got out of the style; my writing was too literary by a long chalk.
    • 1906, L. Frank Baum, Aunt Jane's Nieces, chapter 13
      The world's a stage, they say; but the show ain't always amusing, by a long chalk, and sometimes I wish I didn't have a reserved seat.
    • 1913, D. H. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers, chapter 6
      "My boy, remember you're taking your life in your hands," said Mrs. Morel. "NOTHING is as bad as a marriage that's a hopeless failure. Mine was bad enough, God knows, and ought to teach you something; but it might have been worse by a long chalk."

See alsoEdit