Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

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beat about the bush to intentionally avoid the central matter or point.
beat around the bush to avoid or delay speaking about the most important matter.
Beat Generation (sometimes l.c.) used to characterize some members of the generation that reached maturity in the late 1950s, esp. in the United States, who were alienated from conventional society and who promoted experimentation in artistic and literary forms.
beat the rap (slang) to escape punishment.
beat the tar out of (informal) to beat or whip severely. [2 definitions]
beat (someone) to the punch to seize an opportunity before (someone else).
beat-up (informal) in poor or damaged condition because of age or hard use; in disrepair; shabby.
drop a beat to miss a beat in music, or otherwise lose the rhythm or continuity of something; falter. [2 definitions]