upper hand


Definition of upper hand

: mastery, advantage, control was determined not to let the opposition get the upper hand

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Examples of upper hand in a Sentence

finally gained the upper hand in the argument

Recent Examples on the Web

The food and diet industry has the upper hand here. Jaclyn London, Ms, Rd, Cdn, Good Housekeeping, "Willpower Is a Weight-Loss Scam That's Fueling the Diet Industry," 22 Feb. 2019 After the New Year, but before announcing their break, Zayn and Gigi interlock their fingers as Zayn, characteristically, takes the upper hand. Elizabeth Narins, Cosmopolitan, "Were Gigi and Zayn Doomed All Along? A Body Language Expert Answers," 14 Mar. 2018 Lopez Obrador has vowed to get the upper hand on the fuel thieves and earlier this month tried to choke off their supply by taking several major pipelines off line. Amy Guthrie, The Seattle Times, "Mexico president declares gains in fight against fuel theft," 14 Jan. 2019 Cabbage may have the upper hand in terms nutrient density though. Jaclyn London, Ms, Rd, Cdn, Good Housekeeping, "Fact: Cabbage Packs the Same Nutritional Benefits as Kale," 7 Jan. 2019 In the meantime, both sides are jockeying for advantage on the battlefield to gain the upper hand at the bargaining table. Michael M. Phillips, WSJ, "‘I Think I’ve Been Shot’: Nighttime Raid in Afghanistan Reveals New U.S. Strategy," 5 Dec. 2018 Banks, which act as trading partner, lender and custodian, once firmly held the upper hand. Liz Hoffman, WSJ, "How Banks Lost the Battle for Power on Wall Street," 7 Sep. 2018 In both narrative match-ups, Democrats hold the upper hand by 8 points, 54 – 46 percent, which is a 4-point gain over the generic congressional ballot. Jane Coaston, Vox, "Poll: in 48 GOP districts, voters think Republicans are “more corrupt” than Democrats," 20 July 2018 And which party holds the upper hand in redistricting? Chuck Todd, NBC News, "All elections have consequences. 2018's are huge.," 22 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'upper hand.' 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 upper hand

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

7 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for upper hand

The first known use of upper hand was in the 15th century

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Spanish Central: Translation of upper hand

Nglish: Translation of upper hand for Spanish Speakers

Comments on upper hand

What made you want to look up upper hand? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to boil down or concentrate

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