close, but no cigar


variants or close but no cigar
used to say that a guess was almost correct or that an effort was almost sufficient
Quick: What country jails the most journalists? If you guessed China, you were close, but no cigar.Dexter Filkins
It was close but no cigar for Cincinnati as they fell 13-16 to
"… on Friday, it was close but no cigar for the Dow hitting 18,000. In fact, it got within 10 points of hitting that psychological milestone. …"Alison Kosik
Then last year I reviewed a new, much smaller … headphone, … and while it was awfully good, it wasn't in the league of those aforementioned very best full-size headphones. Close, but no cigar.Steve Guttenberg

Dictionary Entries Near close, but no cigar

Cite this Entry

“Close, but no cigar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Jun. 2024.

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