man of straw


Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Idioms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

man of straw

n
1. a person of little substance
2. chiefly Also called: straw man US a person used as a cover for some dubious plan or enterprise; front man
3. a man who cannot be relied upon to honour his financial commitments, esp because of his limited resources

straw′ man′


n.
1. a person whose function is only to cover another's activities; front.
2. a conveniently weak or innocuous person, object, or issue used as a seeming adversary or argument.
[1895–1900]
References in classic literature ?
A man of straw," cried Anna, with unfeeling levity; "no such creature in the world, I do assure you
If the defendant be a man of straw, who is to pay the costs, Sir?
After all, it was this man of straw who had declared among his kinder intentions decapitation and prolonged hospitalisation in intensive care for his opponent.
SO, the "Hayemaker" turned out to be a man of straw and now he's blaming his little pinkie toe for his failure to deliver on his disgusting trash-talking braggadocio right up to the seconds before the "big-fight" in Hamburg at the weekend.
Brown took over Downing Street from a charming man of straw.