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famous last words

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famous last words

noun phrase

Something said that proves singularly wrong or inappropriate •An ironic reference to the final deathbed utterances of famous people: ''I certainly hope this won't be made public,'' North said. Famous last words (1940s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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famous last words

A phrase used to express disbelief, rejection, or self-deprecation. For example, They said we'd get an extra bonus at Christmas—famous last words! or This book is bound to make the best-seller list—famous last words! This expression alludes to grandiose statements about human affairs that prove to be untrue, such as “This is the war to end all wars,” or “We must make the world safe for democracy.” [ Late 1930s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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