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Needs be the Devil Meet

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Paul in Arlington, Texas, wonders about his grandmother’s response when he used to tell her he needed something. She’d say It needs be the devil meet. It’s likely a version of the older phrase He must needs go that the devil drives. In this case, the word needs functions as an adverb meaning “necessarily,” or “unavoidably,” which intensifies the word must. This is part of a complete episode.

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