One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1An additional anchor for use in emergencies.
2A very dependable person or thing.
- ‘As I said, it's the sheet anchor of what we've come to know in the last century as middle class life.’
- ‘Jim Wallace has been the sheet anchor for the Executive through turbulent times.’
- ‘Wayne Hutchinson was again the sheet anchor of the defence with strong support from Johnny Kearney and Paul Hogan.’
- ‘Modern Indian history is riddled with sheet anchors, which must be a contradiction in terms if sheet anchors are meant to exist only in the singular.’
- ‘The philosophy was accepted and it remained a sheet anchor for the fledgling state of Israel which came into being in 1947.’
- ‘Their sheet anchor is that they were performing it gratuitously and therefore no liability for its performance can arise.’
- ‘Besides, with the team filled with stroke makers, we need a sheet anchor.’
- ‘He had no use for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, Mr. Clinton's sheet anchor that the U.S. Senate had refused to ratify.’
- ‘At the moment, I do not find that sheet anchor, at least not readily.’
- ‘One of the first things the British did in their zone of Germany was to sponsor a new trade union confederation, the sheet anchor of democracy in the years to come.’
- ‘Quickly sizing up the situation, Bangar settled down to playing the role of sheet anchor to perfection.’
- ‘Now I only know that a sheet anchor is a very good thing, and that Ancient India would have been in deep trouble if Alexander hadn't shown up.’
- ‘With Kallis playing the perfect game of sheet anchor while not being overly defensive, the strokemakers could play their shots without fear.’
- ‘As part of his general moral and physical decline, he loses all interest in his work, ‘the work which had been the sheet anchor of his character’.’
- ‘When I quitted the terra firma of Physic this was my sheet anchor, tho’ not my only hope.’
Late 15th century: perhaps related to obsolete shot, denoting two cables spliced together, later influenced by sheet.
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