the eleventh hour

the eleventh hour


  • at the very last minute before an event
  • the latest moment possible, before it is too late

Example Sentences

  1. Just minutes before the deadline, he definitely submitted his assignment at the eleventh hour.
  2. It's very irresponsible to leave chores until the eleventh hour before doing them.
  3. Lisa loves the thrill and rush of delivering parcels at the eleventh hour.
  4. The lady was scolded for reporting for duty at the eleventh hour.
  5. The last passenger to board the aircraft got on at the eleventh hour.


Many say that this idiom originated from the Bible. A very unlikely source, the first mention of the eleventh hour can be found in the book of Matthew, Chapter 20, verse 9. It reads "And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a denarius." This was an allusion to the story of the labourers who came at the eleventh hour of a twelve hour working day and received the same payment as those who had come earlier and had been working all day. Following from that, this phrase has been used to refer to the very last moment before an event or deadline.


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