Die Is Cast, the

Meaning of Idiom ‘The Die is Cast’

The die is cast means the future is set and things will unfold inevitably because a decision has been made or a course of action has been taken which cannot be changed. 1McIntosh, Colin. Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. Cambridge University Press, 2013.,2Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.,3Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.

Usage

“Well, I’ve sold my house and quit my job. The die is cast!”

“When Rebecca reported the harassment to the upper management, she felt like the die was cast and her career would be ruined.”

“Some believe that the moment Einstein confirmed the possibility of an atomic bomb, the die was cast.”

Origin

Although uncertain, the origin is of this idiom is thought to come from a comment made by Julis Caesar upon crossing the Rubicon with his legion in 49 B.C.: Lacta alea est or “the die has been thrown.” The expression came into English by the first half of the 1600’s. 4Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.,5Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.

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Sources   [ + ]

1. McIntosh, Colin. Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. Cambridge University Press, 2013.
2. Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.
3. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
4. Kirkpatrick, Elizabeth M. The Wordsworth Dictionary of Idioms. Ware: Wordsworth, 1995.
5. Ammer, Christine. American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.