straw in the wind


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straw

 (strô)
n.
1.
a. Stalks of threshed grain, used as bedding and food for animals, for thatching, and for weaving or braiding, as into baskets.
b. A single stalk of threshed grain.
2. Pieces or a piece of natural or artificial strawlike material.
3. Something, such as a hat or basket, made of straw.
4. A slender tube used for sucking up a liquid.
5.
a. Something of minimal value or importance.
b. The least valuable bit; a jot: I don't care a straw what you think.
c. Something with too little substance to provide support in a crisis: Near the end we were grasping at straws.
adj.
1. Of, relating to, or made of straw: a straw mat.
2. Containing or used for straw, as a barn or feeding trough.
3. Of the color of straw; yellowish.
4.
a. Of, relating to, or constituting a straw man.
b. Apparently legitimate but actually intended as a cover for illegal or secret activity: set up a straw company to launder money.
Idioms:
final/last straw
The final annoyance or setback, which even though minor makes one no longer able to endure something.
straw in the wind
A slight hint of something to come.

[Middle English, from Old English strēaw; see ster- in Indo-European roots.]

straw′y adj.

straw in the wind

A sign or indication of what might be about to happen.
References in periodicals archive ?
It was certainly no more than, well, a straw in the wind, but on the eve of the Iowa caucuses, Sen.