(to be) etched in stone

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - etched-in-stone

"(to be) etched in stone"

to be very difficult or nearly impossible to change


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - etched-in-stone

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  Well, the big roll-out of the new product line is scheduled for next week.

Colleague 2:  That's great but the marketing team is nowhere near ready for that.  Is there any way that we could postpone the roll-out for a week or so?

Colleague 1:  Absolutely no way.  There are just far too many components involved.  In fact, the schedule has been etched in stone for the past three months.  Guess you had better really get to work.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - etched-in-stone

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  Have you thought of a name for your new business?

Friend 2:  We are probably going to go with "Rent-a-Cycle" but that's not etched in stone.

Friend 1:  You might change the name?

Friend 2:  We haven't printed any of the materials yet so, yes, it is possible the name will change.

(to be) etched in stone - Usage:


(to be) etched in stone - Gerund Form:

Being etched in stone, the regulation was not going to change without significant effort.

(to be) etched in stone - Examples:

1)  ... some other things I'd love to post about but nothing is quite etched in stone yet, so hopefully this next week I can announce a couple other things.

2)  ... a hard-set release date of November 22, 1999. That date was etched in stone.

3)  A lot of this is probably biologically etched in stone, but the fine details are no doubt shaped by our life experiences.

4)  Nothing is promised, nothing is etched in stone, but we are closer than ever before. 

5)  You have made a decision that is etched in stone. Not even a petition from the Pope could change it.

6)  This is partly because older people's buying choices are usually already etched in stone and women tend to buy what their mothers or friends buy, ...

7)  And remember, nothing is etched in stone. What works today might not work tomorrow so be flexible.

8)  My Thanksgiving day menu has been etched in stone for years. Kahlua Turkey, and Kahlua yams. Salad, homemade cranberry relish ...

9)  Remember that pricing is a process; it's never etched in stone.

10)  If anything, this book has taught me that not everything is etched in stone, even if it may seem that way. One unexpected moment can change your ...

11)  Law is not etched in stone. It is not intractable. It is constantly redefined as to what holds to ...

12)  It's important to note that our construction schedule isn't etched in stone -- many factors, such as a harsh winter, may affect timing.

13)  This is a work in progress, and nothing is etched in stone. We'll keep you guessing.

14)  ... most traditional conservatives believe that abortion rights are etched in stone and won't be changed. 

15)  It's not necessarily etched in stone. I'll make changes and adjustments as we go and see what works.

16)  None of these changes is etched in stone; they are only recommendations by the city manager ...

17)  For most schools, requirements are not etched in stone. It's constantly changing, so there is always anxiety about ...

19)  Nothing is etched in stone. Nor is the stock market's path of least resistance always known.

20)  The issue is by no means etched in stone, but the basic parameters of the discussion are starting to take shape.