double-edged sword


Definition of double-edged sword

: something that has or can have both favorable and unfavorable consequences This much freedom of expression and opinion can be a double-edged sword.— Linda Connors

Examples of double-edged sword in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But this remarkable dynamism, some researchers argue, is a double-edged sword. New York Times, "Reinventing the Uterus, One Organoid at a Time," 27 Apr. 2021 Being one of the only foreigners visiting Sri Lanka was a double-edged sword. Lilit Marcus, CNN, "I traveled to Sri Lanka and it felt like I was the only tourist in the entire country," 22 Apr. 2021 That lack of rain is a double-edged sword this time of year, with pollen creeping back up into the extreme range. Henri Hollis, ajc, "SATURDAY’S WEATHER-TRAFFIC: Cool temps, cloudy with possible sprinkles," 17 Apr. 2021 But just as the Internet has played a large part in the erosion of democracy, technology is always a double-edged sword, contributing to the destruction of the planet, no less of ourselves, that it is then called upon to save. Jamieson Webster, The New York Review of Books, "On Breathing," 2 Apr. 2021 Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said the matchup is a double-edged sword. Joe Reedy, Star Tribune, "UCLA, USC go from late night to NCAA prime-time spotlight," 26 Mar. 2021 But the flexibility that some employers are offering at this time is a double-edged sword. Eoin O'carroll, The Christian Science Monitor, "Pressed for time? You’re not alone.," 22 Mar. 2021 But immunosuppressive steroids are a double-edged sword, Crum-Cianflone says, leaving the door open to other infections. Nathaniel Scharping, Science | AAAS, "Common fungus emerges as threat to hospitalized COVID-19 patients," 22 Mar. 2021 Still, the growth in telecommuting could be a double-edged sword, Kolko said. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, "Working from home is here to say, latest job listings show," 16 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'double-edged sword.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of double-edged sword

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for double-edged sword

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The first known use of double-edged sword was in the 15th century

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Statistics for double-edged sword

Last Updated

1 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Double-edged sword.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for double-edged sword

double-edged sword


English Language Learners Definition of double-edged sword

: a sword that has two sharp edges
: something that has both good and bad parts or results

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