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General Writing and Grammar Help/Jack HAD the best of me - Jack GOT the best of me

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Question
Dear Ted:

Which if the following sentences is correct and natural?

Jack GOT the best of me in the last match.

Jack HAD the best of me in the last match.

If both are possible, do they mean the same thing?

Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

Which if the following sentences is correct and natural?

Jack GOT the best of me in the last match.

Jack HAD the best of me in the last match.

*** BOTH of these sentences are correct.  Personally, I would use "got," but others may choose "had."

Here are two references from the "idioms" section of "The Free Dictionary."

http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/have+the+best+of

http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/get+the+best+of

*** Paolo, I use several online dictionaries to answer some of your "idiomatic" questions.
I am pasting in below the URLs for a number of them.  I suggest that you check for your idioms there.

http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/
  Select "idioms"

http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/acref/9780199543793.001.0001/acref-9

http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/get-the-better-of-someone?q=g

http://www.alphadictionary.com/slang/

http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/acref/9780199543700.001.0001/acref-9

http://www.peevish.co.uk/slang/links.htm

http://onlineslangdictionary.com/

http://www.urbandictionary.com/
  This dictionary concentrates on "street language."  There are great amounts of references for sexual and scatological subjects.

*** Here is an important caution about idioms.  I mentioned it in the first of the three messages I sent to you.

IDIOMS cannot be viewed in the same matter as "regular English."  Idioms are "coined from" or are derived from the common usage of the people.  These people do NOT consults grammar books, not do they pay any heed to the general rules of good grammar.  For those reasons, it is very difficult to give you definitive answers about your questions that deal with idioms.

I wish I could come up with solid answers, but I just cannot.  And, neither can anyone else, I am sure.

NOW YOU CAN RATE THE THREE QUESTION.

I apologize for taking so long.  I have had a bad week, but I am better now.

Ted  

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Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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