multitude

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multitude of sins

Fig. many kinds of sins or errors. The term offensive covers a multitude of sins.
See also: multitude, of, sin

hide a multitude of sins

also cover a multitude of sins
to prevent people from noticing something bad I'm a messy eater, so I always wear black – it hides a multitude of sins.
Etymology: based on the saying love covers a multitude of sins from the Bible
See also: hide, multitude, of, sin

cover/hide a multitude of sins

  (humorous)
if something hides a multitude of sins, it prevents people from seeing or discovering something bad Big sweaters are warm and practical and they hide a multitude of sins.
See also: cover, multitude, of, sin

multitude of sins, cover a

Compensate for numerous evils, as in You may not be offering to help with the fair, but that big donation covers a multitude of sins . This expression originated in the New Testament (I Peter 4:8): "And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins."
See also: cover, multitude, of
References in classic literature ?
It got to be pitch dark, at last, and the multitude groaned with horror to feel the cold uncanny night breezes fan through the place and see the stars come out and twinkle in the sky.
However, granting it is there, that is no reason why I am bound to believe the stories of all those Amadises and of all that multitude of knights they tell us about, nor is it reasonable that a man like your worship, so worthy, and with so many good qualities, and endowed with such a good understanding, should allow himself to be persuaded that such wild crazy things as are written in those absurd books of chivalry are really true.
In a little while, however, not only the first twelve had returned, but a multitude of other Quakers had come to rebuke the rulers and to preach against the priests and steeple-houses.
There being abundance of unoccupied ground in the neighborhood, these strangers built huts for themselves, and were soon joined by a multitude of new settlers, who quickly formed a city.
Scores of the savages were vigorously plying their stone pestles in preparing masses of poee-poee, and numbers were gathering green bread-fruit and young cocoanuts in the surrounding groves; when an exceeding great multitude, with a view of encouraging the rest in their labours, stood still, and kept shouting most lustily without intermission.
We appeal now to the sacred bond of sorrow, and summon the great multitude who labor under similar afflictions to take their places in the march.
First the great multitude of the weak must go, then the only relatively strong.
Her stockings and boots and well fitting gloves had worked marvels in her bearing--had given her a feeling of assurance, a sense of belonging to the well-dressed multitude.
But he opposes to me -- with a young man's over-softness, albeit wise beyond his years -- that it were wronging the very nature of woman to force her to lay open her heart's secrets in such broad daylight, and in presence of so great a multitude.
The whole multitude prostrated themselves, terror-stricken, on the ground.
On one side the religious multitude, with their sad visages and dark attire, and on the other, the group of despotic rulers, with the high churchman in the midst, and here and there a crucifix at their bosoms, all magnificently clad, flushed with wine, proud of unjust authority, and scoffing at the universal groan.
Thus would the mate's voice repeat the thought of the master, both gazing ahead, while under their feet the ship rushes at some twelve knots in the direction of the lee shore; and only a couple of miles in front of her swinging and dripping jib-boom, carried naked with an upward slant like a spear, a gray horizon closes the view with a multitude of waves surging upwards violently as if to strike at the stooping clouds.
IT was a sight that some people remembered better even than their own sorrows--the sight in that grey clear morning, when the fatal cart with the two young women in it was descried by the waiting watching multitude, cleaving its way towards the hideous symbol of a deliberately inflicted sudden death.
Thus property is as an instrument to living; an estate is a multitude of instruments; so a slave is an animated instrument, but every one that can minister of himself is more valuable than any other instrument; for if every instrument, at command, or from a preconception of its master's will, could accomplish its work (as the story goes of the statues of Daedalus; or what the poet tells us of the tripods of Vulcan, "that they moved of their own accord into the assembly of the gods "), the shuttle would then weave, and the lyre play of itself; nor would the architect want servants, or the [1254a] master slaves.
What I saw their bravest and their fairest do last night, the lowest multitude that could be scraped up out of the purlieus of Christendom would blush to do, I think.