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Under the wire vs Under wire

under the wirejust before a deadline; at the last possible moment:

  • Nancy mailed off her application, and it got in just under the wire.

Note: The expression is not antonymous in meaning to the phrase over the wire—(dated) speaking on the telephone (also: on the wire):

  • The second advertisement shows a Victorianlooking man speaking over the wire to a woman.

under wire

1. (of an area) fenced with barbed wire:

  • There is the outer perimeter of the military unit, which is under wire, nearby our house.

2. (of railroads) electrified:

  • The United States at that time had more miles of track “under wire” than any other country.