where there's smoke, there's fire

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where there's smoke, there's fire

proverb When there is some indication of a problem or wrongdoing, such a thing probably occurred or exists. The investigation wouldn't be taking this long if there weren't any real leads. Where there's smoke, there's fire.
See also: fire
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

where there's smoke there's fire

Every rumor has some foundation; when things appear suspicious, something is wrong. The metaphor for this idea already appeared in John Heywood’s Proverbs (1546): “There is no fyre without smoke,” and indeed it is a proverb in Italian, French, German, and Spanish.
See also: fire, smoke
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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