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"the net closes"?

Posted by Smokey Stover on June 07, 2006

In Reply to: "The net closes"? posted by Olya on June 07, 2006

: What is the origin of the phrase "the net closes"?

It's a literal phrase which can be used figuratively. The nets used by, say, commercial fishermen, can be closed by bring the two sides or two ends together. When law enforcement agencies attempt to snare a suspect, one can sometimes say the net closes. When an individual or group or nation is, or feels itself to be, trapped, one can speak of a net closing. The locution used when the closure has yet to take place is often something like, "the net is closing in on...." I can't swear to it, but I'm sure some historians, possibly even Churchill, have summarized the period in the European war from November 1943 to May 1945 as "the net closes." SS

It is also true that the word net is often short for network, as it is in Internet, and there are myriad networks in and surrounding our lives today. Sometimes a network closes, that is, ceases operations, in which case a net closes.