Definition of a line in the sand in US English:

a line in the sand

phrase

  • A point beyond which one will not go; a limit to what one will do or accept.

    ‘the banks drew a line in the sand: there was to be no additional help’
    • ‘And he is adamant that the GAA, if it is to prosper, has to become semi-professional, although he would draw a line in the sand well before it could reach all-out professionalism.’
    • ‘Today, my Government is drawing a line in the sand and saying enough is enough.’
    • ‘There is always a time in every country's history where it needs to draw a line in the sand and take tougher measures even if that means taking a big economic risk.’
    • ‘As was clear then and since, this wasn't the most propitious moment to draw a line in the sand - neither Britain or France were in a position to actually defend Poland.’
    • ‘Effectively they had drawn a line in the sand and told us that the overdraft facilities they had given us were on no account to be exceeded.’
    • ‘In effect, the government of B.C. has used the referendum to draw a line in the sand.’
    • ‘Never mind that few of them have ever ridden a horse or even seen a hunt, let alone participated in one: this is an issue which stands for other, more important, issues; it is a line in the sand.’
    • ‘In what was seen by many activists as a line in the sand, the party's national assembly came out strongly against leadership plans to ditch its traditional opposition to Nato.’
    • ‘We need to draw a line in the sand to maintain our voting rights.’
    • ‘I believe that everyone must be prepared to forget any past baggage - draw a line in the sand and move forward in confidence together.’