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Close but No Cigar

The phrase ‘Close, but No Cigar’ is used to indicate that you have fallen just short of a successful outcome and have received no reward for your efforts.

Example of Use: “Did you make enough sales to get a bonus?” Answer: “Close, but no cigar.” 

Interesting fact about Close but No Cigar

The phrase 'close, but no cigar' and a variation, 'nice try, but no cigar,' originated in the United States during the mid-20th century, when carnival booths gave out cigars as prizes. One had to win a game to get a cigar; a close call went unrewarded.

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