giant

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Related to Giants: jets, Redskins, eagles
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a dwarf standing on the shoulders of giants

A person whose insights, discoveries, or knowledge in general is not due to their own ingenuity, but rather due to the discoveries or previous work of great minds that have come before. Though this is indeed an exciting discovery toward curing cancer, I am but a dwarf standing on the shoulders of giants.
See also: giant, of, on, shoulder, standing

battle of the giants

A conflict or competition between two or more powerful people, groups, or entities. Those are the two best teams in the league this year, so the championship game will really be a battle of the giants.
See also: battle, giant, of

gentle giant

Someone who is very large and strong but has a quiet and gentle nature. At first, I was afraid of the big, burly man covered in tattoos, but when I saw him rescue that kitten from the tree, I realized he was just a gentle giant.
See also: gentle, giant

mental giant

An extremely intelligent person. Typically used sarcastically. Some mental giant thought it would be a good idea to connect the wires in reverse order. It doesn't take a mental giant to realize that this will be bad for business.
See also: giant, mental

one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind

A phrase typically said in reference to a breakthrough or advancement of some kind. Astronaut Neil Armstrong famously said the phrase in 1969 when he became the first person to set foot on the moon. I think the self-driving car will be one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind. When we find a cure for this illness, it will be one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.
See also: giant, leap, mankind, one, small, step

sleeping giant

A country that is not currently very powerful or influential but has the potential to be due to its size, population, resources, military, etc. It is still not a major economic player at the moment, but with its huge population and rapidly expanding technological infrastructure, many see it as something of a sleeping giant. I fear we may wake a sleeping giant if we initiate an attack against the country.
See also: giant, sleep

stand on the shoulders of giants

To make discoveries, insights, or progress due to the discoveries or previous work of great minds that have come before. Though this is indeed an exciting discovery toward curing cancer, we have stood on the shoulders of giants to reach this point today.
See also: giant, of, on, shoulder, stand

sleeping giant

a great power that is still and waiting. The huge country to the south is a sleeping giant, waiting for its chance to become sufficiently industrialized to have real prosperity. The U.S. was a sleeping giant at the outbreak of both world wars.
See also: giant, sleep

battle of the giants

a contest between two pre-eminent parties.
This expression may be a reference to the battle between the giants and gods in Greek mythology.
See also: battle, giant, of

mental giant

n. a genius. I’m no mental giant, but I do know trouble when I see it.
See also: giant, mental
References in classic literature ?
If the truth must be told, they were sometimes as troublesome to the Giant as a swarm of ants or mosquitoes, especially as they had a fondness for mischief, and liked to prick his skin with their little swords and lances, to see how thick and tough it was.
ho!" quoth the Giant, shaking his mountainous sides.
They were constantly at war with the cranes, and had always been so, ever since the long- lived Giant could remember.
But I have now said enough to let you see what a gallant little people these were, and how happily they and their forefathers, for nobody knows how many generations, had lived with the immeasurable Giant Antaeus.
Sometimes, for a minute or two, the Giant dropped asleep, and snored like the rush of a whirlwind.
When the Pygmy was quite satisfied that his eyes had not deceived him, he scampered, as fast as his legs would carry him, to the Giant's ear, and stooping over its cavity, shouted lustily into it:
The giant said: 'If you are such a valiant fellow, come with me into our cavern and spend the night with us.' The little tailor was willing, and followed him.
All day long they played, and in the evening they came to the Giant to bid him good-bye.
"But where is your little companion?" he said: "the boy I put into the tree." The Giant loved him the best because he had kissed him.
"You must tell him to be sure and come here to-morrow," said the Giant. But the children said that they did not know where he lived, and had never seen him before; and the Giant felt very sad.
Every afternoon, when school was over, the children came and played with the Giant. But the little boy whom the Giant loved was never seen again.
Years went over, and the Giant grew very old and feeble.
The Giant roared so terribly that for a time they were afraid he had broken loose; but he hadn't.
"Allow me to apologize for the Giant," said the Scarecrow, raising the Patchwork Girl to her feet and dusting her skirt with his stuffed hands.
"Of course," said the little girl, when they had walked a way along the passage, "it was lucky for us the Giant was caged; for, if he had happened to be loose, he--he--"