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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

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

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, what

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 ?
The path from concept to grand opening for the proving ground was a complicated one involving a dramatic reshaping of California City's boundaries and legal wrangling over property acquisition and environmental protection measures.
Last February, two environmental groups, the Center for Biological Diversity and Defenders of Wildlife, filed a lawsuit claiming that environmental reviews were inadequate and that the proving ground could harm desert tortoises and Mojave ground squirrels.
officials unveil a plaque at the company's new American proving grounds near California City.
It is connected on site and is used for proving at actual operating conditions of flow and pressure.
The high pressure proving system consists of a number of different sized parallel turbine meter runs with provisions for installing a field meter for test downstream of the master meter.
In addition, the Proving Ground celebrated the achievement of the one billionth mile of road testing completed since the Proving Ground's inception.
As an integral player in the vehicle development process, the Proving Ground plays a major role in the validation of General Motors vehicles.
The government has the burden of proving at trial that an individual found in possession of an object containing illegal drugs knew that the object contained the illegal substance.
The $110-million Toyota Arizona Proving Ground was constructed by a joint venture of the Bechtel Corp.
Until that happened, "mathematicians would have no appreciation of how powerful automated theorem proving could be.
The Robbins problem is equivalent to proving that the equation not(not(P)) = P can be derived from the following three equations: P or Q = Q or P; (P or Q) or R = P or (Q or R); not(not(P or Q) or not(P or not(Q))) = P.
RADGUARD will also participate in the VPN Proving Ground at ComNet '99, which will be located in Hall C of the Washington, D.
VPN experts from The Tolly Group will offer presentations in the Proving Ground Theatre that take attendees through the solutions.
Under this contract, WESTON will be responsible for a full scope of environmental compliance and restoration activities at Aberdeen Proving Ground," said WESTON vice president and program manager Peter Ciotoli.
Aberdeen Proving Ground is located on approximately 79,000 acres in Harford and Baltimore Counties, Maryland.