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of few words, man of.

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Also, woman of few words. A person who does not speak much; also, a person of action rather than words. For example, A woman of few words, Susan hardly seemed like a successful lawyer, or Harry's a man of few words but he gets things done. This characteristic has been considered praiseworthy since Homer's time, but the precise idiom dates only from about 1600. Shakespeare had it in Henry V (3:2): “Men of few words are the best men.”

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

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