to draw the line

Idiom Definition 1

Idiom Definition - draw the line

"to draw the line"

to firmly decide an arbitrary boundary between two things


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Definition 2

Idiom Definition - draw the line

"to draw the line"

to firmly decide the limit of what you will tolerate or participate in


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition -

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  I really think we need to decide once and for all which areas are the responsibility of the IT department and which are the responsibility of the accounting department.

Colleague 2:  I am sure that both sides will not be happy no matter what the decision is.

Colleague 1:  Still, we have to draw the line and firmly delineate the duties of each department. Otherwise, it will be chaos and duplication of work and problems.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - draw the line

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  Could you please lend me another twenty dollars? I promise to pay you back.

Friend 2:  That's what you said the last time and the time before that and the time before that. Sorry, this is where I draw the line. No more money until you pay back the one hundred dollars that you owe me.

Friend 1:  Are you sure?

Friend 2:  Absolutely. No more money!

to draw the line - Usage:


to draw the line - Gerund Form:

Drawing the line between reality television and cruelty can be difficult.

Drawing a line, he refused to help any more.

to draw the line - Examples:

1)  He was a fantastic player. But where do you draw the line with what you are prepared to pay?

2)  Where does the government draw the line in its quest for national security?

3)  But where do we draw the line between the two extremes?

4)  ... feels wrong. "That," he says, "is where I personally draw the line."

5)  Some content is obvious: a beheading, for example. But where does one draw the line between, say, encouraging violence and passionate rhetoric?

6)  ... part of what defines one's moral and political integrity and identity is where one draws the line de-marking the tolerable from the impermissible.

7)  ... bit of confusion about what exactly constitutes an orc, and specifically, where one draws the line between orcs and goblins.

8)  But she draws the line against tags that indicate "deaf and mute".

9)  Despite his best efforts at playing the populist prince, William draws the line at cleaning his own shoes.

10)  Erdogan has repeatedly said he is open to criticism and dissent but draws the line at insults.

11)  ... such as the Baptist High School, ultimately complied with the directive, they drew the line at allowing Muslim students to turn up for classes wearing the hijab.

12)  When the second IVF pregnancy terminated, we drew the line. It was incredibly difficult - emotionally, physically and spiritually.

13)  First, Washington tried to encourage the moderate resistance in Syria but drew the line at providing arms.

14)  But they drew the line at allowing them to write their own rules.

15)  The bride, however, drew the line at ditching her own wedding gown for a superhero costume. 

16)  Basic human biology isn't quite as simple as XX or XY and drawing the line between men and women can be quite arbitrary.

17)  ... a world with dragons and magic and ice zombies, so where exactly are we drawing the line for plausibility?

18)  The narrative that has made Jejomar Binay an icon is focused on drawing the line between rich against poor.

19)  OK, this is where I'm drawing the line. You may not cross this line, and there will be consequences.

20)  Drawing the line means being able to say 'no', because as women we ...