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contradiction in terms

A statement that seems to contradict itself, with one part of it denying another. For example, I've always believed that “a poor millionaire” was a contradiction in terms. [ Late 1700s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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