Understatement

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An understatement is a figure of speech that has the effect (and sometimes, the purpose) of making something appear to be less important than it actually is. It is a core feature of British humour and comedy.

[edit] Examples

  • This guy is in the whitehouse
  • "Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress." - Announcement on British Airways Flight 9Wikipedia's W.svg, 1982
  • "Our Peculiar Institution" - Employed in the American South
  • "You must take a longer view. The present hunger is temporary. In writing books you must have a longer view. It would be difficult to describe it as hunger." - Maxim Litvinov, Soviet Foreign Minister[1]
  • "Conversely, once tile is penetrated SOFI [Spray-On Foam Insulation] can cause significant damage." - NASA engineers to the officials, on potential sources of problems in Space Shuttle Columbia.[2]


[edit] See also

[edit] References

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