Even-Steven

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Also:

Even stevens
Even stephen

Meaning of Idiom 'Even Steven'

To be even steven means to be exactly equal, have an equal chance, or to have nothing owed on either side of a transaction or other arrangement. 1,2

Usage

"I paid you what I owed you. We're even-steven now."

"We all had an even-stevens chance to win."

"Why are you getting more money than me? I thought this was an even-stevens deal!"

"We can share this candy bar if you want," said Peter. "Even-steven?" asked Sam, "Even-steven," replied Peter.

Origin

Used since the mid-1800's, the name Steven probably does not refer to any person who actually existed but instead, is used as a simple rhyming intensive with even.

Sources
1. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
2. Ayto, John. Oxford Dictionary of English Idioms. Oxford: Oxford U, 2010.

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