Meaning of “go by the book/do sth by the book” in the English Dictionary

british dictionary

"go by the book/do sth by the book" in British English

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go by the book/do sth by the book

C2 to do something exactly as the rules tell you:

My lawyer always goes strictly by the book.
This is a private deal - we don't have to do everything by the book.

(Definition of “go by the book/do sth by the book” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

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