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 classic literature ?
At that, though I was faint and horribly fatigued, I gathered together all my strength, and began running again towards the light.
Above me, in the intense blue of the summer sky, some faint brown shreds of cloud whirled into nothingness.
It was so faint that I doubt if any eyes, except those which, like ours, had for days seen nothing but blackness, could have perceived it at all.
In five minutes there was no longer any doubt; it /was/ a patch of faint light.
On the morning of the fourth day his nostrils were suddenly surprised by a faint new scent.
The voice is low, with a certain faint sweetness or tone which falls soothingly on my ear.
At last as I banged pretty heavily against the bulkheads he warned me in his faint breathless wheeze to be more careful.
With a faint gesture of the hand, he indicated the figure on the bed.
I followed her, afraid that she was going to faint.
Bring me something to eat, at least, for I am faint with hunger.
Instead, either from pain or weakness, he fell to the floor in a dead faint.
1) Hume, who gives the names "impressions" and "ideas" to what may, for present purposes, be identified with our "sensations" and "images," speaks of impressions as "those perceptions which enter with most force and violence" while he defines ideas as "the faint images of these (i.
Thus in sleep, in a fever, in madness, or in any very violent emotions of soul, our ideas may approach to our impressions; as, on the other hand, it sometimes happens, that our impressions are so faint and low that we cannot distinguish them from our ideas.
The door, as well as I could see it in the dim light, was a great piece of wood all studded with nails; and I lifted my hand with a faint heart under my jacket, and knocked once.
By dint of patient investigation, we have been enabled to trace some characters bearing a faint resemblance to the names of the speakers; and we can only discern an entry of a song (supposed to have been sung by Mr.