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fend and prove

dated To argue and defend a point or opinion. I was forced to fend and prove my stance before the tribunal.
See also: and, fend, prove

The exception proves the rule.

Prov. Something that does not follow a rule shows that the rule exists. (Often used facetiously, to justify some rule you have proposed but which someone else has listed exceptions. From a Latin phrase meaning that an exception tests a rule.) Ellen: Men are always rude. Jane: But Alan's always polite. And Larry and Ted are polite, too. Ellen: They're just the exceptions that prove the rule. Bill: All the shows on TV are aimed at people with low intelligence. Alan: What about that news program you like to watch? Bill: The exception proves the rule.
See also: exception, prove, rule

prove oneself as something

to demonstrate that one can serve in a certain office or capacity. It's time to promote her. She has proved herself as a teller. I proved myself as an investor by making a lot of money in the stock market.
See also: prove

prove something to someone

to substantiate a claim about something to someone; to make someone believe or accept a statement about something. What do I have to do to prove my innocence to you? Nothing you say will prove it to me.
See also: prove

prove to be something

to be shown to be someone or something; to be found to be someone or something. Susan proved to be a good friend when she lent me some money. The food proved to be spoiled when I smelled it.
See also: prove

What does that prove?

Fig. So what?; that does not mean anything. (A defensive expression. The heaviest stress is on that. Often with so, as in the examples.) Tom: It seems that you were in the apartment the same night that it was robbed. Bob: So, what does that prove? Tom: Nothing, really. It's just something we need to keep in mind. Rachel: You're late again on your car payment. Jane: What does that prove? Rachel: Simply that you can't afford the car and we are going to repossess it.
See also: does

have something to prove

to need to show that you can succeed when people expect you to fail After two dismal seasons, the players on this team feel they have something to prove.
Usage notes: also used in the negative form have nothing to prove or not have anything to prove (to have no reason to persuade others you can succeed, because you have already succeeded): He was as famous as he wanted to be, and felt he no longer had anything to prove.
See also: have, prove

prove your mettle

(slightly formal) also show your mettle
to show that you are brave and have a strong character As a reporter, she certainly proved her mettle working in the midst of a war zone.
See also: mettle, prove

prove out something

also prove something out
to show that something is true Of the many accusations against her, only two ever proved out. I think there was better safety when there were more controls on the industry, but I don't know if the accident rates will prove that out or not.
See also: out, prove

be the exception that proves the rule

if you say something is the exception that proves the rule, you mean that although it does not support the statement you have made, the statement is usually true This woman is the exception that proves the rule that it is impossible to be a warmonger and a feminist at the same time.
See also: exception, prove, rule

prove/show your mettle

  (slightly formal)
to prove that you are good at doing something by succeeding in a difficult situation A relative newcomer to the game, he's certainly proved his mettle in the last two games.
See also: mettle, prove

exception proves the rule, the

An instance that does not obey a rule shows that the rule exists. For example, John's much shorter than average but excels at basketball-the exception proves the rule . This seemingly paradoxical phrase is the converse of the older idea that every rule has an exception. [Mid-1600s]
See also: exception, prove

prove out

Succeed, turn out well, as in Farm-raised trout has proved out so well that the fish industry plans to experiment with other species . [Mid-1900s]
See also: out, prove
References in periodicals archive ?
This key distinction between probability and provability was at the heart of Oxford philosopher L.
I think that standards of proof are looking for provability based on set theory.
The focus of product development is the application of electronic signature and encryption, which enhance the provability and security of Internet transactions.
Suppose that of the 369 death-eligible cases in New Jersey, it could be determined that prosecutors declined to seek the death penalty in one quarter of those cases because of legitimate questions of provability.
It is determined that for both the aggregate pool and the relevant subset, 20% of the decisions not to seek death stem from concerns of provability on the part of prosecutors.
According to Alexander of Aphrodisias, in such a syllogism, "the major term is the predicate of a problem whose provability is to be investigated by the construction of a syllogism.
Prosecutorial decisions to seek the death penalty have three different sources: 1) provability considerations; 2) extrajudicial considerations; and 3) invidious considerations.
ValiCert has given B2B marketplace operators a comprehensive solution for addressing the integrity and provability of their customers' e-Transactions without the constraint of specifying that they use any particular brand of digital credential," said Tracy Wilk, vice president of product management for CyberSource.
Secure time stamping technology provides a highly accurate and tamper-resistant source of time that can be applied in such a way as to establish provability, for example, a business contract being submitted prior to a deadline.
On the one hand, students will emerge with a good grasp of what provability is and involves--especially, that it is relative to a given system of rules, that these rules should be set out in precise terms, and that they should prove all and only truth-preserving inferences.
Graham Priest's In Contradiction (Dordrecht: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 1987, chapter 3) contains an argument concerning the intuitive or naive notion of arithmetic proof, or provability.
Godel's second theorem is included because it involves an iteration of deviant coextensive provability operations that satisfy different principles in Peano arithmetic, relevant to the mechanistic arguments in the philosophy of mind.
In other words, in the case of empirical discourse the perfect analogue of the antirealist notion of constructive provability is the notion of constructive falsifiability.
I assumed [Carnap writes] that he had in mind a syntactical definition of logical truth or provability.
First, Dummett believes that an intuitionistic provability semantics already is his kind of theory of meaning for restricted cases.