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A leap in the dark a daring step or enterprise whose consequences are unpredictable; in Vanbrugh's The Provoked Wife (1697), one of the characters, contemplating marriage, says: ‘So, now I am in for Hobbes's voyage, a great leap in the dark.’ The allusion is to the attributed last words of the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588–1679), ‘I am about to take my last voyage, a great leap in the dark.’

leap year a year, occurring once every four years, which has 366 days including 29 February as an intercalary day. The term, recorded from late Middle English, probably comes from the fact that feast days after February in such a year fell two days later than in the previous year, rather than one day later as in other years, and could be said to have ‘leaped’ a day.According to tradition, a woman may propose to a man on 29 February.

See also Great Leap Forward at great, look before you leap.


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