Definition of thumb one's nose at in US English:

thumb one's nose at

phrase

informal
  • Show disdain or contempt for.

    • ‘By thumbing our nose at the world and dismissing the consensus views of the scientific community, we are scaring off that talent and sending it to our competitors.’
    • ‘The reader or viewer who thumbs his nose at the copyright notice risks receiving a threatening letter from the copyright owner.’
    • ‘William Kristol has used the page to attack Colin Powell, George Will to thumb his nose at the State Department and Robert Novak to deride the CIA.’
    • ‘We cannot allow activist local elected officials to thumb their nose at 5,000 years of human history.’
    • ‘Even more significantly, in having married a black woman, Becker seemed to be thumbing his nose at deeply ingrained Aryan idealism.’
    • ‘Yet instead of pursuing a bi-partisan agenda, he has thumbed his nose at over half of the American population.’
    • ‘He had the women, he had the gadgets and he was thumbing his nose at what was considered politically correct at the time.’
    • ‘All you know is, there's no rule she's afraid to thumb her nose at.’
    • ‘There is nothing ordinary about a man who thumbs his nose at the system of justice and to reward him, in effect, with a pardon.’
    • ‘You can thumb your nose at all the people who are younger than you’
    defy, go against, rebel against, flout, fly in the face of, disobey, refuse to obey, disregard, ignore, set one's face against, kick against
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