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the emperor's new clothes

Something widely accepted as true or professed as being praiseworthy due to an unwillingness of the general population to criticize it or be seen as going against popular opinion. Taken from the Hans Christian Andersen fable of the same name, in which a vain king is sold imaginary clothing by two weavers who promise him that it can only be seen by those who are ignorant, incompetent, or unfit for their position. The company's newest device is, in fact, a complete waste of money, but so many people are invested in their brand loyalty that they will continue to buy and adore it like the emperor's new clothes.
See also: clothes, new

little emperor

An only child in a modern Chinese family who is seen as spoiled, overly protected, or the center of excessive amounts of attention. The phenomenon (and resulting term) is seen to have arisen in large part due to China's one-child policy. It's quite plain in their house that the parents yield to the whim of their little emperor.
See also: emperor, little

the ˌemperor’s new ˈclothes

,

the ˌemperor has no ˈclothes

used to describe a situation in which everybody suddenly realises that they were mistaken in believing that somebody/something was very good, important, etc: Soon, investors will realize that the emperor has no clothes and there will be a big sell-off in stocks.This comes from a story by Hans Christian Andersen. Two men offer to make an emperor a new suit from a very light material which they say stupid people cannot see. When the emperor puts on the suit, nobody wants to appear stupid so they all praise his new clothes. However, when a little boy asks why the emperor has no clothes on, everybody admits that they can see no clothes and that the emperor is naked.
See also: clothes, new
References in classic literature ?
The answer is obvious: The weakness of most of the members, who are unwilling to expose themselves to the mercy of foreign powers; the weakness of most of the principal members, compared with the formidable powers all around them; the vast weight and influence which the emperor derives from his separate and heriditary dominions; and the interest he feels in preserving a system with which his family pride is connected, and which constitutes him the first prince in Europe; -- these causes support a feeble and precarious Union; whilst the repellant quality, incident to the nature of sovereignty, and which time continually strengthens, prevents any reform whatever, founded on a proper consolidation.
Trouillefou made a sign, and the duke, the emperor, and the passed masters of pickpockets, and the isolated robbers, came and ranged themselves around him in a horseshoe, of which Gringoire, still roughly held by the body, formed the centre.
There is likewise another diversion, which is only shown before the emperor and empress, and first minister, upon particular occasions.
I had the good fortune to divert the emperor one day after a very extraordinary manner.
I should like very much to know how far they have got on with the cloth,' thought the Emperor.
I will send my old and honoured minister to the weavers,' thought the Emperor.
But it will please our sovereign the Emperor Napoleon if we take this bridge, so let us three go and take it
They spin him a thousand gasconades, saying that the war is over, that the Emperor Francis is arranging a meeting with Bonaparte, that they desire to see Prince Auersperg, and so on.
Our mighty Emperor has lately caused himself to be nickel-plated.
But show us in -- I'm sure the Emperor will receive us, even in his present state"
When on leaving College the cadets were received by the Emperor, he did not again refer to Kasatsky's offence, but told them all, as was his custom, that they should serve him and the fatherland loyally, that he would always be their best friend, and that when necessary they might approach him direct.
But though he noticed something strange and unusual in the behaviour towards him of both mother and daughter, he was blinded by being so deeply in love, and did not realize what almost the whole town knew--namely, that his fiancee had been the Emperor Nicholas's mistress the previous year.
The Emperor was proud of his new tin castle, and showed his visitors through all the rooms.
While then and there the Emperor hits on the idea of the Legion of Honor.
I should like to know how the weavers are getting on with my cloth," said the Emperor to himself, after some little time had elapsed; he was, however, rather embarrassed, when he remembered that a simpleton, or one unfit for his office, would be unable to see the manufacture.