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to hit the nail on the head


Click below to listen to the phrase.

Choose the correct definition : a, b or c.

a) to be right

Well done ! That’s the right answer.

to hit the nail on the head’ means to do or say something exactly right. It can also mean to get to the precise point.

French translation

mettre le doigt dessus, faire mouche, avoir parfaitement raison

How NOT to translate : *frapper le clou sur la tête

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Examples in context

‘Hundreds of patients died needlessly while health managers were slashing their budgets in pursuit of NHS foundation trust status during a four-year period until 2008. Asked if all the main parties had lost public confidence on health, the inveterate Worcestershire health campaigner Dr Richard Taylor didn’t hesitate : "You’ve hit the nail on the head," he replied.’

BBC News, 8th Jan. 2013

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‘’Outside the London megalopolis, in Britain’s marginal regions, the recession is a deepening reality, funding cuts are reducing resources and unemployment remains worryingly high. While London has a fair claim to being the world’s most prosperous city, many other parts of the country have been abandoned and ignored in the rush to accommodate global capitalism. One young entrepreneur hit the nail on the head when he commented that "a 23- or 24-year-old Londoner is more likely to be concerned about Mumbai than Newcastle".

The Guardian, 10th June 2013

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Everyday usage

I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that what’s lacking in this company is teamwork.

I have noticed the problem. I have hit the nail on the head.

b) to be biased

Sorry, wrong answer. Please try again.

c) to be wrong

Sorry, wrong answer. Please try again.


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