A compliment with two meanings, one of which is unflattering to the receiver: “The senator said that her opponent was quite competent for someone so inexperienced; you hear nothing but left-handed compliments in these debates.”
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Words nearby left-handed compliment
Example sentences from the Web for left-handed compliment
Not to be left behind, progressives in neighboring Wisconsin clamored to join the cutting edge of public health.
Gay marriage was the hot-button fight on the left and right.
Clad in a blue, striped button-down, a silver watch adorning his left wrist, Huckabee beams on the cover.Huckabee 2016: Bend Over and Take It Like a Prisoner!|Olivia Nuzzi|January 8, 2015|DAILY BEAST
Meanwhile, almost exactly 30 years after the trial, the judge left his home to board a steamboat and was never heard from again.New York’s Most Tragic Ghost Loves Minimalist Swedish Fashion|Nina Strochlic|January 8, 2015|DAILY BEAST
The clichés about football-obsessed husbands and frustrated wives are pretty heavy-handed.‘A Gronking to Remember’ Speed Read: 8 Naughtiest Bits|Emily Shire|January 7, 2015|DAILY BEAST
What need to look to right or left when you are swallowing up free mile after mile of dizzying road?The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol|William J. Locke
She is quite true, but not wise, and your left hand must not know what your right hand is doing.Checkmate|Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
The vision—it had been an instantaneous flash after all and nothing more—had left his mind completely for the time.The Wave|Algernon Blackwood
She had just left the wharf at Cincinnati for Louisville, with 225 passengers on board, of whom but 124 were saved.The Every Day Book of History and Chronology|Joel Munsell
Thus was the man left entirely to the devil, not even his life being reserved, as in the case of Job.Solomon and Solomonic Literature|Moncure Daniel Conway
Idioms and Phrases with left-handed compliment
Also, backhanded compliment. An insult in the guise of an expression of praise. For example, She said she liked my hair, but it turned out to be a left-handed compliment when she asked how long I'd been dyeing it. This expression uses left-handed in the sense of “questionable or doubtful,” a usage dating from about 1600.