The bedrock of something is the principles, ideas, or facts on which it is based. Focus on the most important aspects of a particular situation. In construction, bedrock is the solid rock beneath the soil layer that is best to build a foundation on. Skyscrapers are best built on pillars that rest on bedrock. So, by analogy, a bedrock principle is one that forms the basis for others.
‘Let’s get down to bedrock’ so that everyone has a good grasp on the project overall before we split up to do our separate parts.
- How best to promote transparency, the bedrock of trust and confidence.
- Together, they form the bedrock of international human rights law.
Some people believe that the family is the bedrock of society.
Mutual trust is the bedrock of a relationship.
Honesty is the bedrock of any healthy relationship.
“Let’s get down to brass tacks” and “dead as a doornail”
In the literature on English phrases, two “metal idioms” have attracted special attention: dead as a doornail and to get (come) down to brass tacks. Fig. to begin to talk about important things; to get down to business. Brass tacks mean (1) the essentials, or (2) the basic facts, so to get down to brass tacks is to focus on the essentials. Also, get down to bedrock or the nitty gritty or cases.
‘*Let’s get down to brass tacks’ so that everyone has a good grasp on the project overall before we split up to do our separate parts.
“When you come down to ‘brass tacks’ – if we may be allowed the expression – everybody is governed by selfishness.” from the USA in January 1863, was in the Texas newspaper The Tri-Weekly Telegraph
What is a doornail?
Doornails are very large nails that, in early times, were used to strengthen doors. Workers hit the nails into doors and the sharp end came out the other side. The worker then flattened the sharp metal with a hammer to make each nail secure.
There are two theories about why doornails were called “dead.” One says that, after they were repeatedly hit, the nails became unusable for any other purpose. Another says that the force and number of times these nails were hit “killed” them, making them “dead.”