of biblical proportions

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of biblical proportions

  1. Of or pertaining to a natural disaster or other cataclysmic event so immense that it brings to mind biblical accounts of horrific catastrophes.
    The tsunami wrought destruction of biblical proportions.
    • 1982, Henry Kissinger, Years of Upheaval,
      To have striven so hard, to have molded a public personality out of so amorphous an identity, to have sustained that superhuman effort only to end with every weakness disclosed and every error compounding the downfall—that was a fate of biblical proportions.
    • 1984, Ghostbusters,
      Dr. Peter Venkman: This city is headed for a disaster of biblical proportions.
      Mayor: What do you mean, "biblical"?
      Dr. Raymond Stantz: What he means is Old Testament, Mr. Mayor, real wrath-of-God type stuff.
    • 1992, George Herbert Walker Bush, "State of the Union Address,"
      We gather tonight at a dramatic and deeply promising time in our history, and in the history of man on earth. For in the past 12 months, the world has known changes of almost biblical proportions. And even now, months after the failed coup that doomed a failed system, I am not sure we have absorbed the full impact, the full import of what happened.
    • 2002, Tim Larimer, "Cult Shock," Time, 1 July,
      During a thundershower of biblical proportions, hundreds of people dash from a train station in the Tokyo suburb of Kawaguchi, across a bricked plaza and into a modern civic center.
    • 2005, Ted Kennedy, "Bush Nominates Robert as Chief Justice," CNN, 6 Sep.,
      In the midst of a national disaster of biblical proportions, it is difficult for the American people to participate fully in the selection of the next chief justice.
  2. (figuratively) By extension, of or pertaining to a thing or occurrence having vast size, extent, or consequences.
    With a cast of thousands and a special effects budget in excess of ten million dollars, it portends to be a film of biblical proportions.
    • 1998, Walter Kirn, "The Waves of Righteousness", The New York Times, February 22,
      Russell Banks'Cloudsplitter, a novel of near-biblical proportions about the abolitionist freedom fighter John Brown, is shaped like an explosive with an exceedingly long and winding fuse.
    • 2003, Roxanne Roberts, "The Mysteries of Mary Magdalene," Washington Post, 20 July, p. D01,
      The Da Vinci Code resurrects a debate of biblical proportions.
    • 2003, Arthur M. Lesk, "From electrons to proteins and back again," International Journal of Quantum Chemistry, vol. 95, no. 6, p. 679,
      He also drilled into us that all the secrets of the structure of matter were implicit in Charlotte Moore's tables, which assumed an authority and role of biblical proportions.