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from the sublime to the ridiculous

Fig. from something fine and uplifting to something ridiculous or mundane. After Mr. Jones had introduced my wife to his wife, he jokingly turned to introduce me and said, "From the sublime to the ridiculous." After the opera singer finished, the master of ceremonies introduced the comic juggler saying, "From the sublime to the ridiculous...."
See also: ridiculous, sublime

From the sublime to the ridiculous is only a step.

Prov. Something grand can easily become very funny. Bob, I don't think you should include a bowl of breakfast cereal in your still-life painting. From the sublime to the ridiculous is only a step. The production of Macbeth went from the sublime to the ridiculous when Lady Macbeth came onstage in an old army uniform.
See also: ridiculous, step, sublime

make someone look ridiculous

to make someone look foolish (not funny). This hat makes me look ridiculous. Please make me look good. Don't make me look ridiculous!
See also: look, make, ridiculous

from the sublime to the ridiculous

From the beautiful to the silly, from great to puny. For example, They played first Bach and then an ad jingle-from the sublime to the ridiculous. The reverse, from the ridiculous to the sublime, is used with the opposite meaning. Coined by Tom Paine in The Age of Reason (1794), in which he said the two are so closely related that it is but one step from one to the other, the phrase has been often repeated in either order.
See also: ridiculous, sublime
References in periodicals archive ?
This version seems to recognise the ridiculousness of surgery to remove a wax lining in your stomach, instead cautioning you to allow plenty of time between servings for your stomach to 'clear the wax'.
The book is written for the kind of child who is secure enough to laugh at the ridiculousness of each situation.
Witness the ridiculousness of words in this sample dialogue from Kalman's manual for adults: Johnny reports to Mom, "Bill said I'm a jerk.
We won't win the political battles against them by pretending that Hitler was no more a threat than the petty tyrants of today but by pointing out the ridiculousness of the comparison.
com for more than eight years and, in fairness, this is the first time I have come across such ridiculousness.
I particularly liked Blackbread the Pirate with a crew of rats trying to train up Peter as their new recruit, almost Monty Python in its ridiculousness.
And I think it's time we have a TV news blog that recognizes this ridiculousness and plays to it.
There is a self-awareness here at the ridiculousness of the enterprise -- screenwriters Bill Marsilii and Terry Rossio pepper the script with characters repeating a variation of ``none of this makes sense -- none of it.
Like those earlier movies, Goldfish, which was a favorite at such venues as Outfest, is peppered with philosophical observations about the ridiculousness of love, coupled with the notion that, despite the drama, the betrayals, the futility, we all chase that old elusive butterfly anyway.
I suggest that anyone who has a poncho-wearing relative should educate them in the ridiculousness of their choice of dress immediately.
The author begins his story with a warning that there is bad language in this story, and there certainly is--along with shady characters, drugs, violence, and an almost illegal amount of humor and ridiculousness.
I hope you hear from many other Cuban Americans complaining about the ridiculousness of Galeano and his conflicting and contradictory thoughts.
Malone was quick to acknowledge his initial gullibility and to demonstrate the utter ridiculousness of the Ireland forgeries.
But in end, the plan collapsed under the weight of its own ridiculousness and no amount of bluster or message discipline or strategizing could change that.
Nor does the world recognise the ridiculousness and ignominiousness of such disordered behaviour precisely because of its great prevalence.