I have used the phrases "This is going to come to a head" or "coming to a head". I think I know what they mean, I think I'm using them correctly.
So...where do these phrases come from? And, ahem, what do they (really) mean?
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Come to a head: (TFD)
- Fig. [for a problem] to reach a critical or crucial stage.
Ngram: the expression 'come to a head' seems to be used from the 18th century and appears to refer to the culminating part of boil, a pimple or abscess that is likely to break.
Come to a head: The phrase finder refers to MW:
- a) the part of a boil, pimple, or abscess at which it is likely to break
- b) culminating point of action : CRISIS -- events came to a head.