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strong silent type

A man of action who is reserved and masks his feelings. For example, Paula always preferred the strong silent type to more extroverted men. Almost never used for a woman, this expression may be obsolescent. [ c. 1900 ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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