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Related to proves: according, scruffy, take for granted, taken for granted, seize the opportunity, reveals

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

be the exception that proves the rule

To contradict a rule and thus confirm that the rule exists. A: "We're always told to get eight hours of sleep, but I usually feel really groggy when I sleep that much." B: "Well, I guess you're the exception that proves the rule."
See also: exception, prove, rule, that

have something to prove

To need to display and confirm one's abilities to others who are doubtful. His parents expect his art career to fail, so he definitely has something to prove with this art show.
See also: have, prove, something

prove (one's) mettle

To prove that one has endurance and strength of character, or the necessary skills, abilities, or traits to succeed in something. You may be the youngest lawyer in the firm, but you certainly proved your mettle in that high-profile murder case. The new CEO proved her mettle when she joined the company in 2012 and completely restructured their dying mobile phone division into the powerhouse it is today.
See also: mettle, prove

prove out

1. To show the validity of something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "prove" and "out." If you can prove out these allegations, that company will soon be faced with a scandal.
2. To succeed. A noun or pronoun can be used between "prove" and "out." My hypothesis still has not proved out, and I can't determine why.
See also: out, 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, that, what

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

the exception that proves the rule

You say that something is the exception that proves the rule to mean that the example that you have just mentioned is not normal and is the opposite of what you usually find. Towers should generally be arranged in clusters, but the Post Office Tower was the exception that proved the rule — it needs to stand alone so that its signals are not interrupted. The most creative minds are often said to be the product of a problematic childhood, but Hornby must be the exception that proves the rule. Note: `Prove' here means `to test by experiment or analysis' rather than `to establish as true'. So, the meaning is that an exception tests a rule, not that it establishes the rule as true in all other situations.
See also: exception, prove, rule, that

the exception that proves the rule

a particular case that is so unusual that it is evidence of the validity of the rule that generally applies.
This phrase comes from the Latin legal maxim exceptio probat regulum in casibus non exceptis ‘exception proves the rule in the cases not excepted’. This in fact meant that the recognition of something as an exception proved the existence of a rule, but the idiom is popularly used or understood to mean ‘a person or thing that does not conform to the general rule affecting others of that class’
1998 Spectator The success of The Full Monty in the United States is an exception which proves the rule. On such lucky breaks, industries and economies are not built.
See also: exception, prove, rule, that

the exˈception that proves the ˈrule

(saying) people say that something is the exception that proves the rule when they are stating something that seems to be different from the normal situation, but they mean that the normal situation remains true in general: English people are supposed to be very reserved, but Pete is the exception that proves the rule — he’ll chat to anyone!
See also: exception, prove, rule, that

be on, show, prove, etc. your ˈmettle

be prepared to do the best work you can or perform as well as you can in a particular situation: When the boss comes round, I want you all to show your mettle.He’ll have to be on his mettle if he wants to win the next race.
Mettle is the ability and determination to do something successfully in spite of difficult conditions.
See also: mettle
References in classic literature ?
But well thou comst Before thy fellows, ambitious to win From me som Plume, that thy success may show Destruction to the rest: this pause between (Unanswerd least thou boast) to let thee know; At first I thought that Libertie and Heav'n To heav'nly Soules had bin all one; but now I see that most through sloth had rather serve, Ministring Spirits, traind up in Feast and Song; Such hast thou arm'd, the Minstrelsie of Heav'n, Servilitie with freedom to contend, As both thir deeds compar'd this day shall prove.
The authors do not tell us "how it's done," which is a pity, for it would surely prove exciting.
Come now with me," he cried, "and I will soon prove that I am right.
If it be that in devotion Lies a power hearts to move, That which every day I show thee, Helpful to my suit should prove.
It is just his fantastic dreams, his vulgar folly that he will desire to retain, simply in order to prove to himself--as though that were so necessary--that men still are men and not the keys of a piano, which the laws of nature threaten to control so completely that soon one will be able to desire nothing but by the calendar.
Bingley, when questioned by Jane, had long ago asserted his blamelessness in the affair; that proud and repulsive as were his manners, she had never, in the whole course of their acquaintance-- an acquaintance which had latterly brought them much together, and given her a sort of intimacy with his ways-- seen anything that betrayed him to be unprincipled or unjust--anything that spoke him of irreligious or immoral habits; that among his own connections he was esteemed and valued-- that even Wickham had allowed him merit as a brother, and that she had often heard him speak so affectionately of his sister as to prove him capable of some amiable feeling; that had his actions been what Mr.
He said, his people could not go home satisfied unless they had something to take with them to prove that they had met with the white men.
And therefore, those that are seconds in factions, do many times, when the faction subdivideth, prove principals; but many times also, they prove ciphers and cashiered; for many a man's strength is in opposition; and when that faileth, he groweth out of use.
We don't have to prove it," answered Dorothy, indignantly.
He assured Emily that he had only decided on writing to her, after some hesitation, in the hope of serving interests which he did not himself understand, but which might prove to be interests worthy of consideration, nevertheless.
But I tremble for you when I think of all you are to prove by Jackson's arm.
Thanks to a sacrifice to your interests and your happiness, on Miss Silvester's part--which I tell you frankly I have done my utmost to prevent--I am in a position to prove positively that Arnold Brinkworth was a single man when he married you from my house in Kent.
Notwithstanding this, let us assure our sweet friend and the sister arts of imitation that if she will only prove her title to exist in a well-ordered State we shall be delighted to receive her--we are very conscious of her charms; but we may not on that account betray the truth.
As to the apprehension of bestowing bounty on such as may hereafter prove unworthy objects, because many have proved such; surely it can never deter a good man from generosity.
Verily, it is difficult to prove all being, and hard to make it speak.