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1. a sign of approval. It was a thumbs up on the new filtration plant at Thursday's village board meeting. There was no thumbs up for the mayor as she faced certain defeat in today's balloting.
2. approving; positive. The new filtration plant got a thumbs-up decision at the board meeting. A thumbs-up vote assured another three years of financial assistance.
An expression of approval or hopefulness, as in The town said thumbs up on building the elderly housing project. The antonym thumbs down indicates disapproval or rejection, as in Mother gave us thumbs down on serving beer at our party. Alluding to crowd signals used in Roman amphitheaters, these idioms were first recorded in English about 1600. In ancient times the meaning of the gestures was opposite that of today. Thumbs down indicated approval; thumbs up, rejection. Exactly when the reversal occurred is not known, but the present conventions were established by the early 1900s.
1. n. a sign of approval. It was a thumbs up on the new filtration plant at Thursday’s village board meeting.
2. mod. approving; positive. The new filtration plant got a thumbs up decision at the board meeting.