upper hand


Definition of upper hand

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

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of upper hand in a Sentence

finally gained the upper hand in the argument
Recent Examples on the Web Engaging with the Biden team on policies to curb emissions, too, could give biofuels producers the upper hand in their conflict with the oil industry. Abby Smith, Washington Examiner, "After spending Trump years fighting Big Oil, biofuels industry rallies against electric car mandates under Biden," 9 Dec. 2020 Peronism, a movement born out of Juan Peron’s first presidency in 1946, typically favors interventionist policies that give workers the upper hand over businesses. Patrick Gillespie, Bloomberg.com, "Cracks Surface in Argentina’s Ruling Coalition as Crisis Deepens," 16 Oct. 2020 Local political science experts, however, still give Spartz the upper hand. Arika Herron, The Indianapolis Star, "Republican McCormick endorses another Democrat, this time in tight congressional race," 8 Oct. 2020 And my three-year-old son has quickly learned that work calls give him the upper hand. Kathryn Vasel, CNN, "The buyouts are here," 7 July 2020 Buyers are competing for a limited number of homes, so sellers have the upper hand. Elizabeth Renter Nerdwallet, Star Tribune, "What hopeful home buyers will need to succeed in 2021," 30 Jan. 2021 The days when organizations had the upper hand, when the Cowboys drafted and identified and changed out quarterbacks seemingly at will, are done. Kevin Sherrington, Dallas News, "The days of good deals on NFL QBs are over, and not just in Dallas," 29 Jan. 2021 In an intense game, neither team gained much of an advantage through the first three-plus quarters, but McMain gained the upper hand down the stretch. Josh Preston Contributing Writer, NOLA.com, "Boys basketball: McMain pulls away from Booker T. Washington in final minutes," 11 Jan. 2021 On November 25th Bertelsmann gained the upper hand. The Economist, "Book-binding Bertelsmann snags Simon & Schuster," 25 Nov. 2020

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.

See More

First Known Use of upper hand

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about upper hand

Time Traveler for upper hand

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for upper hand

Last Updated

23 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Upper hand.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/upper%20hand. Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for upper hand

upper hand


Kids Definition of upper hand

More from Merriam-Webster on upper hand

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for 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).


Test Your Vocabulary

February 2021 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of perdure?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!