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Friday, March 14, 2008

ESL Phrase Lesson #4 "Up The Ante"

Background of the phrase:

This phrase comes from the card game of "Poker" where the amount of money in the winning pot is increased, the card player may say, " I want to up the ante $50.00!" Therefore, it has been taken to be frequently used in everyday American English to describe making something to increase in relation to competing against something else. Consider the examples below:

Example 1: If restaurant (A) offers a dinner for $15.00 and restaurant (B) offers the same type of dinner for $12.00 and includes a salad, then restaurant (B) has "up the ante" for dinner customers in the area.

Example 2: In the transportation industry, Henry Ford of the Ford Motor Company "up the ante" by introducing the Model T Ford car into the market by offering it at a price that working people could afford to purchase.

Now if you hear in a conversation in the United States the phrase, "up the ante" you will understand what was spoken!
Please return for more everyday American English Phrases, and I invite you to offer your comments by clicking on the comments button below.

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