faint

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damn someone or something with faint praise

Fig. to criticize someone or something indirectly by not praising enthusiastically. The critic did not say that he disliked the play, but he damned it with faint praise. Mrs. Brown is very proud of her son's achievements, but damns her daughter's with faint praise.
See also: damn, faint, praise

faint dead away

Fig. to faint and fall unconscious. I almost fainted dead away. David will faint dead away when he reads this.
See also: away, dead, faint

faint from something

to faint because of something. I nearly fainted from fear! Three people along the parade route fainted from the heat.
See also: faint

Faint heart never won fair lady.

Prov. A timid suitor never won his lady. (Used to encourage boys or men to be bold in courting women.) Bill: I'd really like to go out with Alice, but what if she says no? Alan: You won't know till you ask her. Faint heart never won fair lady. Don't be so shy about talking to Edith. Faint heart never won fair lady.
See also: faint, fair, heart, lady, never, won

faint of heart

Fig. people who are squeamish; someone who is sickened or disturbed by unpleasantness or challenge. The pathway around the top of the volcano, near the crater, is not for the faint of heart.
See also: faint, heart, of

not have the faintest idea

also not have the foggiest idea
to not know anything at all about something not have the foggiest notion I didn't have the faintest idea where I was or which way I was going – I simply knew I had to get away. These people don't have the foggiest idea what America's really like.
Usage notes: also used in the forms I have no idea and I haven't the slightest idea
See also: faint, have, idea, not

damn (somebody/something) with faint praise

to show only slight approval for someone or something By qualifying his support, you could argue he was damning these leaders with faint praise. Maybe I'm damning them with faint praise, but the Yankees are easier to like than the Atlanta Braves in this series.
See also: damn, faint, praise

damn somebody/something with faint praise

to praise something or someone in such a weak way that it is obvious you do not really admire them She damned Reynolds with faint praise, calling him one of the best imitators in the world.
See also: damn, faint, praise

not have the faintest (idea)

to have no knowledge of or no information about something 'Do you know where Anna is?' 'I haven't the faintest.' (often + question word) I haven't the faintest idea what you're talking about.
See also: faint, have

not be for the faint-hearted

if something is not for the faint-hearted, it is not suitable for people who become frightened easily The drive along the winding coast road is not for the faint-hearted, particularly when it's foggy.

damn with faint praise

Compliment so feebly that it amounts to no compliment at all, or even implies condemnation. For example, The reviewer damned the singer with faint praise, admiring her dress but not mentioning her voice . This idea was already expressed in Roman times by Favorinus (c. a.d. 110) but the actual expression comes from Alexander Pope's Epistle to Doctor Arbuthnot (1733): "Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer, and, without sneering, teach the rest to sneer."
See also: damn, faint, praise
References in periodicals archive ?
In contrast, when material crashes into the surface of a star, it releases all its energy and becomes brighter rather than fainter.
The M96 cluster contains three Messier objects--M95, M96, M105--plus a number of fainter NGC and UGC galaxies.
Any new construction is probably going to be more likely to be gas," said Fainter, citing the speed at which gas plants can be built and the low cost of natural gas relative to a few years ago.
A bright vertical prominence appeared on the NE limb on July 17 with a fainter extension at the top of it parallel to the limb, extending southwards, resembling a windsock.
Spitzer's measurements told the astronomers that both bodies are one million times fainter than the sun in total light, and at least one billion times fainter in visible light alone.
Moreover, the supernovas are fainter, and therefore harder to detect, than gamma-ray bursts.
But these are fainter and may need telescopes with aperture above eight inches.
He heard a rapping in response - strong at first, but then fainter and fainter until there was only silence, followed by what sounded like sucking air.
The larger the telescope, the more light it can collect and the fainter the objects it can image.
These would capture 100 times more light since the area of the lens is 100 times bigger than our pupil and so we see much fainter things.
However, viewing was a little difficult as the waning moon washed out the fainter meteors.
uk Apparently, The Newcastle Daily News account states: "the screams for help continued for a short time then they grew fainter and fainter, the sound died out leaving everything still.
Only a few dozen ultracool subdwarfs, which are up to 10,000 times fainter than the Sun, have been identified.
If respect fades away in such a key sector, the awareness of the dignity of the person will tend to become fainter and fainter in other sectors of human endeavour as well (the economy, the world of labour).
The challenge is that planets are much, much fainter than stars," Ray Jayawardhana, one of the scientists, said.