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walking encyclopedia

A very knowledgeable person, as in Ask Rob—he's a walking encyclopedia of military history. A similar expression, a walking dictionary, was used by George Chapman in his poem “Tears of Peace” (c. 1600).
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Examples from the Web for walking encyclopedia
Historical Examples
  • As a "professor" I always felt myself a sham, with its chief duties of being a walking encyclopedia of erudition.

  • He knew precisely what she would say; Ann was a kind of walking encyclopedia of the conventions.

    Impact Irving E. Cox
  • A walking encyclopedia cannot work for want of room to turn round in his own head.

    Health, Happiness, and Longevity Louis Philippe McCarty
  • I found her most intelligent and so far as my career on and off the stage was concerned she was a walking encyclopedia.

    Nat Goodwin's Book Nat C. Goodwin
  • Blind Tom's memory was a blank on most subjects, but he was a walking encyclopedia on music.

    The Trained Memory Warren Hilton

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