heath robinson

Heath Robinson
(UK) If a machine or system is described as Heath Robinson, it is very complicated, but not practical or effective, named after a cartoonist who drew very complicated machines that performed simple tasks.

The small dictionary of idiomes. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Heath-Robinson — /hēth robˈin sən/ adjective Used to describe an over ingenious, ridiculously complicated or elaborate mechanical contrivance ORIGIN: Heath Robinson (1872–1944), an artist who drew such contraptions • • • Heath Robinsonesqueˈ, Heath Robinsōˈnian… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Heath Robinson — Heath Rob|in|son [ˌhi:θ ˈrɔbınsən US ˈra: ] adj BrE [Date: 1900 2000; Origin: William Heath Robinson (1872 194), English humorous artist who drew pictures of very complicated machines] a Heath Robinson machine, system etc is very complicated in… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Heath Robinson — William Heath Robinson Dessin humoristique de W. Heath Robinson paru en mars 1915 William Heath Robinson (31 mai 1872 13 septembre 1944) est un illustrateur britannique. Il est resté célèbre pour ses dessins de machineries d une complexité… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Heath Robinson — (1872–1944) a cartoonist and illustrator who was known especially for his comic drawings of strange and complicated machines for doing very simple tasks. As a result, any machine that appears ridiculously complicated is now often referred to as… …   Universalium

  • Heath Robinson — British if a machine or system is Heath Robinson, it is very complicated in a way that is funny, but not practical or effective. My granny s got this great Heath Robinson device for slicing eggs …   New idioms dictionary

  • Heath Robinson — UK [ˌhiːθ ˈrɒbɪns(ə)n] / US [ˌhɪθ ˈrɑbɪnsən] adjective British a Heath Robinson machine or method is funny and clever but much too complicated for whatever job it is intended to perform • Etymology: Heath Robinson (1872–1944) was a British… …   English dictionary

  • Heath Robinson — /hiθ ˈrɒbənsən/ (say heeth robuhnsuhn) adjective 1. (of a mechanical device) excessively complicated in its design though intended to perform a simple function. 2. impractical and absurdly complex, as a scheme. Also, Heath Robinsonian. {after the …   Australian English dictionary

  • Heath Robinson — adjective Brit. ingeniously or ridiculously over complicated in design or construction. Origin early 20th cent.: named after the English cartoonist William Heath Robinson …   English new terms dictionary

  • Heath Robinson — adjective BrE a Heath Robinson machine, system etc is very complicated in an amusing way but not at all practical; rube goldberg AmE heating / hi:tIN/ noun (U) BrE a system for making a room or building warm; the heat AmE: a huge heating bill see …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • Heath Robinson — adj. absurdly ingenious and impracticable in design or construction. Etymology: W. Heath Robinson, Engl. cartoonist d. 1944 who drew such contrivances …   Useful english dictionary

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