catch/capture lightning in a bottle

Definition of catch/capture lightning in a bottle

chiefly US
:to succeed in a way that is very lucky or unlikely
  • He caught lightning in a bottle with the success of his very first book.

Word by Word Definitions

catch play
  1. : to capture or seize especially after pursuit

  2. : to take or entangle in or as if in a snare

  3. : deceive

  1. : something caught

  2. : the act, action, or fact of catching

  3. : a game in which a ball is thrown and caught

capture play
  1. : an act or instance of capturing: such as

  2. : an act of catching, winning, or gaining control by force, stratagem, or guile

  3. : a move in a board game (such as chess or checkers) that gains an opponent's piece

  1. : to take captive

  2. : to gain or win especially through effort

  3. : to emphasize, represent, or preserve (something, such as a scene, mood, or quality) in a more or less permanent form

lightning play
  1. : the flashing of light produced by a discharge of atmospheric electricity

  2. : a sudden stroke of fortune

  1. : having or moving with or as if with the speed and suddenness of lightning

  1. : to discharge a flash of lightning

bottle play
  1. : a rigid or semirigid container typically of glass or plastic having a comparatively narrow neck or mouth and usually no handle

  2. : a usually bottle-shaped container made of skin for storing a liquid

  3. : the quantity held by a bottle

  1. : to confine as if in a bottle : restrain

  2. : to put or keep in a position or situation that makes free activity, progress, or escape difficult or impossible

  3. : to put into or as if into a bottle


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