• When someone or something goes by the book, it means they following the rules exactly.
  • Strictly according to the rules.
  • In a way that strictly adheres to the established rules.

1. My legal team goes strictly by the book.


2. The Olympic committee decided that the competition wasn’t judged by the book.


3. Johnny used to be rebellious but now he lives by the book.


4. Sometimes the most prestigious officers were those who didn’t go by the book.

aboveboard, becoming, befitting, by the numbers, correct, disciplined, harsh, moral, orderly, planned, polite, precise, respectable, right, rigid, solid, square, straight, straightforward, strict, structured, systematic, systematical, well-regulated

Do more harm than good

To do more harm than good means to have a bad effect rather than a good one. To make a situation worse rather than better. To be damaging rather than helpful. 1. I'm sorry but saying anything at this point may do more harm than good. 2. Her boyfriend is doing more...

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Do the unthinkable

To do the unthinkable means to do something unexpected. Impossible to imagine; inconceivable. Unreasonable; improbable; not to be considered; out of the question. 1. This store is doing the unthinkable and making their products more affordable. 2. Skateboarding isn't...

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Drop something like a hot potato

To drop someone/something like a hot potato means to disassociate oneself with someone or something instantly. To discontinue; to get rid of very quickly. To quickly stop being involved with someone/something. 1. I dropped the idea like a hot potato because my boss...

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