cold comfort

Idioms & Phrases

cold comfort

Slight or no consolation. For example, He can't lend us his canoe but will tell us where to rent onethat's cold comfort. The adjective cold was being applied to comfort in this sense by the early 1300s, and Shakespeare used the idiom numerous times.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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