if/when all else fails

Definition of if/when all else fails

:if/when everything else one has attempted has failed
  • He only bothers to read the directions if/when all else fails.

Word by Word Definitions

all play
  1. : the whole amount, quantity, or extent of

  2. : as much as possible

  3. : every member or individual component of

  1. : wholly, quite

  2. : selected as the best (as at a sport) within an area or organization

  3. : only, exclusively

  1. : the whole number, quantity, or amount : totality

  2. used in such phrases as for all I know, for all I care, and for all the good it does to indicate a lack of knowledge, interest, or effectiveness

  3. : everybody, everything

  1. : the whole of one's possessions, resources, or energy

  1. : other : different : atypical

  2. : isomeric form or variety of (a specified chemical compound)

  3. : being one of a group whose members together constitute a structural unit especially of a language

else play
  1. : in a different manner or place or at a different time

  2. : in an additional manner or place or at an additional time

  3. : if not : otherwise

  1. : other:

  2. : being different in identity

  3. : being in addition

fail play fails
  1. : to lose strength : weaken

  2. : to fade or die away

  3. : to stop functioning normally

  1. : failure

  2. : a failure (as by a security dealer) to deliver or receive securities within a prescribed period after purchase or sale


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serious difficulty or misfortune

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