from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A race in which the contestants fun in turns, a number of them making up a team, and each running only a portion of the distance, when a comrade takes up the running, and so on till the completion of the full distance. As each runner completes his portion, he touches with his hand his mate who is about to take up the race.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • The relay-race model of intellectual history is simple enough: a go-ahead culture picks up the torch, runs as far as it can, and hands the light of learning to a younger contender before sinking into exhaustion.

    Pathfinders: The Golden Age of Arabic Science by Jim al-Khalili – review

  • I'm moving away from the counter as the clerk hands over my half-pound package; I reach back and collect it as if it were a relay-race baton and scurry off in the opposite direction.

    A Life Lesson Learned at the Stop & Shop

  • The alternative is a relay-race dash to the shops.

    A new toy (from hell)

  • The alternative is a relay-race dash to the shops.

    pushchair rage

  • That relay-race of torch-bearers is a living picture of the wonderful relay-race of heroes who, right through the centuries, have, with dauntless courage and a scorn of danger and difficulty, passed through thrilling adventures in order to carry the Light across the continents and oceans of the world.

    The Book of Missionary Heroes

  • For bibliography of the relay-race motif among the American Indians see Boas (JAFL 25: 249; Thompson, 448-449).

    Filipino Popular Tales

  • In that ancient Greek relay-race the prize to each winner was simply a wreath of leaves cut by a priest with a golden knife from trees in the sacred grove near the Sea, -- the grove where the Temple of Neptune, the god of the Ocean, stood.

    The Book of Missionary Heroes

  • In the great relay-race of the world many athletes -- men and women -- have won great fame by the speed and skill and daring with which they carried forward the torch and, themselves dropping in their tracks, have passed the flame on to the next runner; Paul, Francis,

    The Book of Missionary Heroes

  • The quickfire challenge will be the ever-popular "tag-team cookoff," where two teams each take turns creating a single dish, relay-race style.


  • We do know, though, that it will be partly concerned with generational succession in the relay-race of creativity - Alfred Molina plays Rothko; the extraordinary Eddie Redmayne portrays the composite assistant-figure whose talent is edging towards Pop Art. We can suspect, too, that the play may pinpoint the compromising Seagram commission as the start of the personal unravelling that led to Rothko's suicide in 1970.

    The Independent - Frontpage RSS Feed


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