Achilles' heel

Meaning: An Achilles' heel is a weakness that could result in failure.

For example:

  • He's a good golfer, but his Achilles' heel is his putting and it's often made him lose matches.

  • The country's dependence on imported oil could prove to be its Achilles' heel if prices keep on rising.

Origin: From the ancient Greek myth of Achilles whose mother made him invulnerable to attack by dipping him headfirst into a sacred river when he was a baby. She was holding him by one foot, and the heel of this foot wasn't touched by the water so it became his "weak point" later in life.

Quick Quiz:

She's a good manager, but her Achilles' heel is

a. her good personality

b. her work experience

c. her poor English

Idiom of the Day

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Contributor: Matt Errey