She had often heard of people cutting off their noses to spite their faces but heretofore it had been only a figure of speech.
There are no more uses of "figure of speech" in the book.
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A slight figure of speech I cut my chest wide open They come and watch us bleed Is it art like I was hoping now? —THE AVETT BROTHERS, "SLIGHT FIGURE OF SPEECH" WHEN WE ENTER THE BUILDING, I IMMEDIATELY SEARCH for Will.