Between the devil and the deep blue sea

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"Between the devil and the deep blue sea" is an idiom meaning a dilemma—i.e., to choose between two undesirable situations (equivalent to "between a rock and a hard place").

The first recorded citation of "the Devil and the deep sea" in print is in Robert Monro's His expedition with the worthy Scots regiment called Mac-keyes, 1637: "I, with my partie, did lie on our poste, as betwixt the devill and the deep sea."

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