Softpedalled

soft-pedal

[sawft-ped-l, soft-]
verb (used without object), soft-pedaled, soft-pedaling or (especially British) soft-pedalled, soft-pedalling.
1.
to use the soft pedal.
verb (used with object), soft-pedaled, soft-pedaling or (especially British) soft-pedalled, soft-pedalling.
2.
to soften the sound of by using the soft pedal.
3.
Informal. to tone or play down; make less strong, as an idea or fact: The dean soft-pedaled the reports of cheating.

Origin:
1915–20; v. use of noun phrase soft pedal

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
soft-pedal
 
vb , (US) -als, -alling, -alled, -als, -aling, -aled
1.  to mute the tone of (a piano) by depressing the soft pedal
2.  informal to make (something, esp something unpleasant) less obvious by deliberately failing to emphasize or allude to it
 
n
3.  sustaining pedal Compare piano a foot-operated lever on a piano, the left one of two, that either moves the whole action closer to the strings so that the hammers strike with less force or causes fewer of the strings to sound

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