Attempting to persuade without being obvious about it, by understating a position so the listener takes the good points as obvious.
See Also: soft sell

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  • soft-pedal — soft pedals, soft pedalling, soft pedalled VERB If you soft pedal something, you deliberately reduce the amount of activity or pressure that you have been using to get something done or seen. [V n] He refused to soft pedal an investigation into… …   English dictionary

  • soft-pedal — [sôft′ped΄ l, säft′ped΄ l] vt. soft pedaled or soft pedalled, soft pedaling or soft pedalling 1. to soften or dampen the tone of (a musical instrument) by use of a special pedal 2. Informal to make less emphatic, less obtrusive, less conspicuous …   English World dictionary

  • soft-pedal — past tense and past participle soft pedalled present participle soft pedalling BrE past tense and past participle soft pedaled present participle soft pedaling AmE v [T] informal to make something seem less important or less urgent than it really …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • soft pedal — noun count a PEDAL on a piano that the player presses with their foot to make the sound softer …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • soft pedal — n. a pedal used to soften or dampen the tone of a piano or any of certain other musical instruments …   English World dictionary

  • soft-pedal — soft′ ped′al v. aled, al•ing (esp. brit.) alled, al•ling. 1) mad to use the soft pedal of a piano 2) inf to attempt to make less obvious, important, or objectionable; downplay • Etymology: 1915–20 …   From formal English to slang

  • soft-pedal — verb transitive to make something seem less important or less unpleasant than it really is …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Soft pedal — The soft pedal is the pedal at the left under the keyboard of the grand piano The soft pedal (or una corda pedal) is one of the standard pedals on a piano, generally placed leftmost among the pedals. On a grand piano this pedal shifts the whole… …   Wikipedia

  • soft-pedal — /sawft ped l, soft /, v., soft pedaled, soft pedaling or (esp. Brit.) soft pedalled, soft pedalling. v.i. 1. to use the soft pedal. v.t. 2. to soften the sound of by using the soft pedal. 3. Informal. to tone or play down; make less strong, as an …   Universalium

  • soft-pedal — [c]/sɒft ˈpɛdl / (say soft pedl) verb (soft pedalled or, US, soft pedaled, soft pedalling or, US, soft pedaling) –verb (i) 1. to use the soft pedal. 2. Colloquial to make concessions or be conciliatory, as in criticism: *Eventually I ll ask him… …   Australian English dictionary

  • soft-pedal — UK / US verb [transitive] Word forms soft pedal : present tense I/you/we/they soft pedal he/she/it soft pedals present participle soft pedalling past tense soft pedalled past participle soft pedalled to make something seem less important or less… …   English dictionary

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