a good five-cent cigar

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a good five-cent cigar

Something that is well or reasonably priced. We need a good five-cent cigar, not more of these ridiculously overpriced items.
See also: cigar, good
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

a good five-cent cigar

A sensibly affordable item. The remark “What this country needs is a good five-cent cigar” was popularized by Thomas Riley Marshall, vice president of the United States under Woodrow Wilson. In one account, he made the remark while presiding in the Senate after he heard a succession of senators enumerate what was lacking in the United States. The remark, which most likely originated with a 19th-century humorist named Kin Hubbard, was appropriated by several generations of Americans to complain obliquely about overpriced items of any sort.
See also: cigar, good
Endangered Phrases by Steven D. Price Copyright © 2011 by Steven D. Price
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References in periodicals archive ?
"The Good Five-Cent Cigar" -- the student newspaper at the University of Rhode Island -- ran a piece about why the comics aren't so good.
Thomas Riley Marshall, President Woodrow Wilson's vice president, had pronounced, "What this country needs is a really good five-cent cigar." Heeding the call, Hill priced his brands at five cents and promised that they were equal in quality to the three for 50 cents variety.
Does this country still need a good five-cent cigar? Maybe, but what smokers are getting usually starts at a buck and goes up, way up, from there.