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dim bulb

An unintelligent or slow-witted person. I explained this to you not once, but three times! Are you just a dim bulb, or what?
See also: bulb, dim

dim down

To lessen something in brightness, as of a light. A noun or pronoun can be used between "dim" and "down." I dimmed down the lights so that we could have a romantic candlelit dinner. We knew that the play was about to start once the lights dimmed down.
See also: dim, down

dim out

To darken completely after a period of dimming. We were all disappointed when the lights dimmed out in the middle of our party.
See also: dim, out

dim up

To cause dim lights to become brighter. We knew that the band wasn't going to play another encore when the lights in the arena dimmed up.
See also: dim, up


One who is stupid or foolish. Geez, he keeps pulling on a door that's clearly marked "push"—what a dimwit.

take a dim view (of someone or something)

To view (something) unfavorably; to disapprove (of something). I'm afraid the administration is taking a dim view of that legislation, so it will most likely get vetoed. Even though you might think it's a minor offense, the authorities still take a dim view. So far the boss has taken a dim view of the new intern.
See also: dim, someone, take, view

take a poor view of (someone or something)

To view someone or something unfavorably; to disapprove of someone or something. I'm afraid the administration is taking a poor view of that legislation, so it will most likely get vetoed. The authorities take a poor view of any kind of fraud, even what you might think is a minor offense. So far the boss has taken a poor view of the new intern.
See also: of, poor, take, view

the (dim and) distant past

A time long ago in the past. It's easy to forget that, in the dim and distant past, these giant cities used to be nothing but fields and marshes. He's just a washed-up old drunk now, but he used to be a huge star in the distant past.
See also: distant, past
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

dim down

[for the lights] to go dim. The lights dimmed down for a few seconds. Open the stage curtain when the house lights dim down.
See also: dim, down

dim out

[for a light] to grow dim and go out altogether. The lights dimmed out twice during the storm. I was afraid that the lights would dim out completely.
See also: dim, out

dim something down

to make lights dim; to use a dimmer to make the lights dimmer. Why don't you dim the lights down and put on some music? Let me dim down the lights and put on some music.
See also: dim, down

dim something up

to use a dimmer to make the lights brighter. (Theatrical. A dimmer is a rheostat, variable transformer, or something similar. The expression, a seeming contradiction, is the opposite of dim something down.) As the curtain rose, the electrician dimmed the lights up on a beautiful scene. You dimmed up the lights too fast.
See also: dim, up

take a dim view of someone or something

to disapprove of someone or something. Of all the boys, the teacher likes Dave the least. She takes a dim view of him. I take a dim view of that law.
See also: dim, of, take, view
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

take a dim view of

Regard disapprovingly, as in I take a dim view of meeting every single week. This idiom, which uses dim in the sense of "unfavorable," was first recorded in 1947
See also: dim, of, take, view
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

take a dim view of something


take a poor view of something

COMMON If you take a dim view of something or take a poor view of it, you disapprove of it. The French take a dim view of anyone who only has a snack at lunchtime. Fellow critics took a poor view of a critic who reviewed Paramount films and accepted a fee from the studio.
See also: dim, of, something, take, view
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

take a dim (or poor) view of

regard someone or something with disapproval.
1996 C. J. Stone Fierce Dancing He says that…the Home Office…take a dim view of lifers talking to the press.
See also: dim, of, take, view
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

take a dim/poor ˈview of somebody/something

disagree with or dislike somebody/something: Farmers tend to take a dim view of the public walking over their land.The judge said he took a very poor view of their behaviour.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017


n. the evening; the night. (Streets.) Where’ll you be this dim?

dim bulb

n. a dull person; a stupid person. George seems to be a dim bulb, but he’s a straight-A student.
See also: bulb, dim


n. an oaf; a dullard. (Also a rude term of address.) Oh, Dave, you can be such a dimwit!
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.

take a dim view of, to

To disapprove. Today dim is only rarely used in the sense of “unfavorable,” as it is here. This metaphor dates from the mid-twentieth century. H. Grieve used it in Something in Country Air (1947): “Mr. Everard took a dim view of his youngest niece.”
See also: dim, take, to, view
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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My mind's eye always pictured a true high-end custom holster maker as a grizzled man in his 60s or early 70s; hunchbacked and bespectacled from bending over a dimly lit workbench 10, 12, 14 or maybe 16 hours a day; large hands with crack-skinned fingers rough enough to sand titanium.
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Now I see through the glass dimly one part of the renewal happening at Trinity, Oro.
There are some of them in this exhibition, dark canvases many of them, almost Scottish in aspect with brooding skies and dimly perceived lands.
This icon serves as a kind of window on a scene that can otherwise only be dimly imagined.
Scott is a total genius in her evocation of this dimly historic time and place.
Owing to the structure's padlocked front door, the viewer--which is to say the perpetually frustrated consumer--is physically excluded from all the assembled stuff, resigned to peer in at the dimly lit space through dusty windows.
Using Chromacore technology, this illuminating pillow casts a soft glow best seen in a dark or dimly lit room.
Just as hot electric-stove elements radiate light, black smokers glow dimly as 400[degrees] C fluid emerges.
Many of them are trapped in the romanticism of their own past, wanting against all evidence to believe their ancient ways of conquest, banditry and slavery are still relevant to the dimly understood "outside world." This title deserves a place in school and public collections.
Collapsing compactly into a slim pocketsize, the Everest is a perfect companion for the cruise-traveler--use it to read in bed or on the plane, as a desk lamp in dimly lit staterooms; keep it in your carry-on as a handy flashlight; or set it next to your laptop as a task light.
Instead, God will use Israel as a bruised reed or a dimly burning wick to bring light to the nations.
Aside from collecting the countless photo strips that illustrate the text--compiled from therapy sessions, phone messages, interviews, and dimly remembered anecdotes--there was no set game plan.