(one's) (true) stripes

(one's) (true) stripes

One's true or honest beliefs, thoughts, convictions, biases, desires, etc.; one's real personality, character, or disposition. (A less common variant of "one's (true) colors.") Dave said all along that he only wanted this deal because it was in the company's best interest, but he showed his true stripes once he realized that he wouldn't get any special commission for his efforts. You will really see your friends' true stripes when you call upon them in a time of crisis. A: "I know you don't want to believe that your own brother would betray you like this, but the evidence against him is pretty damning." B: "Have I been blind to his true stripes all these years?"
See also: stripe
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
See also: