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There is one expression I came across recently - 'The take home is ...'. The full sentence was “The take home is that regular use of caffeine produces no benefit to alertness, energy, or function”. Can anyone explain what does the beginning of the sentence mean? And does it have something in common with another expression "to drive your point home"?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

The take-home or the take-away of something is its most important point or lesson. It's the one part you should carry (home) with you to remember.

Edit: As Sam correctly notes, the origin of this phrase lies in the amount of your salary you take home after taxes, etc., have been deducted.

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In the same vein, take-home pay, refers to the amount of your salary that you would literally take home after taxes and insurance and such were removed. – Sam Oct 10 '11 at 3:57
@Sam Quite right. I've added that in. – onomatomaniak Oct 10 '11 at 8:18
I suppose it's rather like 'the bottom line'. – Barrie England Oct 10 '11 at 8:55
I think definitionally, absolutely, but I tend to see them used in quite different contexts. A professor could end an explanation with "The take-home is...", whereas "The bottom line is..." is often said with some insistence/frustration during a negotiation or a disagreement. – onomatomaniak Oct 10 '11 at 9:53
@onomatomaniak not necessarily. Something might 'affect the bottom line', or you might say 'what's the bottom line?' both without a negative connotation. – Sam Oct 10 '11 at 21:39

" Take homes" can also mean the prescription drug you take home with you from a substance abuse clinic, such as methadone or buprenorphine(subutex).

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