to a fault

Idioms & Phrases

to a fault

Excessively, extremely, as in He was generous to a fault. This phrase, always qualifying an adjective, has been so used since the mid-1700s. Indeed, Oliver Goldsmith had this precise usage in The Life of Richard Nash (1762).

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