Idiom: Exception that proves the rule

Idiom Definitions for 'Exception that proves the rule'


This expression is used by many to indicate that an exception in some way confirms a rule. Others say that the exception tests the rule. In its original legal sense, it meant that a rule could sometimes be inferred from an exemption or exception. In general use, the first meaning predominates nowadays, much to the annoyance of some pedants.
Download our Idioms eBooks - Download our English idioms eBooks now...

See also: