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Beau geste

a fine or noble gesture, often futile or only for effect.
Contemporary Examples

Finally, Assad was back in the diplomatic arena, strengthened by his beau geste.
For Bashar Al-Assad, Crossing Obama’s Red Line Was a Win-Win Anna Momigliano November 21, 2013

Historical Examples

But this was the beau geste of a contemporary who wished to appear broad-minded.
Modern Painting, Its Tendency and Meaning Willard Huntington Wright

Maybe you remember seeing him act in the film called “beau geste.”
Shaun O’Day of Ireland Madeline Brandeis

The dresser loudly acclaimed Madame’s action as a beau geste.
The Mountebank William J. Locke

His renunciation had in it that of the beau geste which she secretly adored.
The Mountebank William J. Locke

noun (pl) beaux gestes (bo ʒɛst)
a noble or gracious gesture or act, esp one that is meaningless


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    a conception of perfect beauty. a model of excellence. Historical Examples He was my beau ideal of a naval officer—bold and masterful, yet soft and pleasant-voiced withal when he chose to conciliate. A Modern Buccaneer Rolf Boldrewood And there, you know who that is, that beau ideal of a hussar? Charles O’Malley, The Irish Dragoon, […]

  • Beau monde

    the fashionable world; high society. Historical Examples Well, if she does, I shall perhaps have a glimpse at the beau monde. Lippincott’s Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. XII. No. 31. October, 1873. Various I chose the latter, on account of the beau monde which the soldier had boasted of. The Memoirs of Count […]

  • Beauregard

    Pierre Gustave Toutant [pyer gy-stav too-tahn] /pyɛr güˈstav tuˈtɑ̃/ (Show IPA), 1818–93, Confederate general in the U.S. Civil War. Historical Examples Well, then he was going to Beauregard, so I would see him occasionally. Warren Commission (8 of 26): Hearings Vol. VIII (of 15) The President’s Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy You and […]

  • Beau’s line

    beau’s line Beau’s line (bōz) n. Transverse depressions on the fingernails occurring after trauma such as severe febrile disease, malnutrition, or coronary occlusion.

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