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in the valley of the blind, the one-eyed man is king

proverb Someone with few skills or abilities can impress and wield power over those who have even less to offer. A: "Oh please, Dave's a fool, and the only reason he has any power at all is because he can do lots of odd jobs that the other people around here can't." B: "Wow, I guess it’s true what they say—in the valley of the blind, the one-eyed man is king."
See also: king, man, of, valley

peaks and valleys

1. High points and low points, as in a graph, statistical model, economic cycle, etc. I wouldn't buy that stock right now because it's experiencing some serious peaks and valleys. I would wait until it stabilizes a bit. Those peaks and valleys on the electroencephalogram mean that the patient's brain is still active.
2. Good times and bad times. Life is full of peaks and valleys—the trick is not to let the low points get you down.
See also: and, peak, valley

uncanny valley

A hypothesized phenomenon holding that humans experience a sense of revulsion or cognitive discomfort when encountering robots, dolls, animations, or other human-like entities that exhibit human characteristics that are not precisely lifelike. The "valley" refers to the portion of the spectrum of realism in which a feeling of the "uncanny" is experienced—i.e. between depictions that are convincingly lifelike and those that are intentionally unrealistic. The concept was first described by Japanese robotics professor Masahiro Mori in 1970. None of our testers reacted positively to that doll. They all found it creepy, which might be indicative of the uncanny valley. The computer-generated faces at the end of the movie really dipped into the uncanny valley—I found them really distracting.
See also: valley

Valley girl

1. noun An affluent young woman living in the San Fernando Valley of Southern California in the 1970s and '80s, characterized by a particular dialect called "Valleyspeak" and an excessive preoccupation with material goods, physical appearance, and social status. I grew up right in the middle of San Fernando in the early '80s, and I was definitely a Valley girl. Shopping and boys were the only things we cared about!
2. noun Any young woman more preoccupied with materialism, consumerism, and social status than with personal or intellectual development, especially one who uses the slang and dialect of Valleyspeak. I know you think I'm just some airheaded Valley girl, but I'm more than that—I have aspirations beyond the shopping mall, you know! A: "We're having a pop quiz today? Ugh, gag me with a spoon." B: "You're such a Valley girl, Samantha. Try reading a book for once!"
3. adjective Of or indicating such a young woman or her characteristics. I worked really hard to distance myself from the ditzy Valley girl culture that was so prevalent in my school. Her mom always puts on this annoying Valley girl accent whenever she hears us using slang or saying "like" too many times.
See also: girl, valley

valley of death

A grim place where death is or seems imminent. It appears in the Alfred, Lord Tennyson poem "The Charge of the Light Brigade" and is likely a shortened version of the Biblical phrase "valley of the shadow of death." Walking through that old, bombed-out neighborhood, Sam felt like he was in the valley of death. I would never be able to march into the valley of death like soldiers do.
See also: death, of, valley

valley of the shadow of death

A grim place where death is or seems imminent. This Biblical phrase comes from Psalm 23. Walking through that old, bombed-out neighborhood, Sam felt like he was in the valley of the shadow of death. I would never be able to march into the valley of the shadow of death like soldiers do.
See also: death, of, shadow, valley
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
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References in classic literature ?
Besides this bay the shores of the island are indented by several other extensive inlets, into which descend broad and verdant valleys. These are inhabited by as many distinct tribes of savages, who, although speaking kindred dialects of a common language, and having the same religion and laws, have from time immemorial waged hereditary warfare against each other.
Owing to the mutual hostilities of the different tribes I have mentioned, the mountainous tracts which separate their respective territories remain altogether uninhabited; the natives invariably dwelling in the depths of the valleys, with a view of securing themselves from the predatory incursions of their enemies, who often lurk along their borders, ready to cut off any imprudent straggler, or make a descent upon the inmates of some sequestered habitation.
Still, nevertheless, with an earnest shout, and evidently with as much good faith as ever, the people bellowed 'He is the very image of the Great Stone Face!' But Ernest turned sadly from the wrinkled shrewdness of that sordid visage, and gazed up the valley, where, amid a gathering mist, gilded by the last sunbeams, he could still distinguish those glorious features which had impressed themselves into his soul.
He attracted little notice from the other inhabitants of the valley; for they saw nothing remarkable in his way of life, save that, when the labor of the day was over, he still loved to go apart and gaze and meditate upon the Great Stone Face.
It so happened that a native-born son of the valley, many years before, had enlisted as a soldier, and, after a great deal of hard fighting, had now become an illustrious commander.
On the day of the great festival, Ernest, with all the other people of the valley, left their work, and proceeded to the spot where the sylvan banquet was prepared.
Ernest still dwelt in his native valley, and was now a man of middle age.
Gathergold and old Blood-and-Thunder, was a native of the valley, but had left it in his early days, and taken up the trades of law and politics.
While his friends were doing their best to make him President, Old Stony Phiz, as he was called, set out on a visit to the valley where he was born.
We must not forget to mention that there was a band of music, which made the echoes of the mountains ring and reverberate with the loud triumph of its strains; so that airy and soul-thrilling melodies broke out among all the heights and hollows, as if every nook of his native valley had found a voice, to welcome the distinguished guest.
Unsought for, undesired, had come the fame which so many seek, and made him known in the great world, beyond the limits of the valley in which he had dwelt so quietly.
He, likewise, was a native of the valley, but had spent the greater part of his life at a distance from that romantic region, pouring out his sweet music amid the bustle and din of cities.
"You are strangers in the Valley of Voe, and do not seem to know our ways; so I will try to save you."
Once a little fish swam too near the surface, and the kitten grabbed it in her mouth and ate it up as quick as a wink; but Dorothy cautioned her to be careful what she ate in this valley of enchantments, and no more fishes were careless enough to swim within reach.
After a journey of several hours they came to a point where the river curved, and they found they must cross a mile or so of the Valley before they came to the Pyramid Mountain.
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