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1. something appearing strong or fierce, but in reality being all show and no substance, weak, nothing to be feared.

2. an art book publishing company.
1. most bullies and politicians fall into this category.

2. Paper Tiger brings us such awesome artists as Rodney Matthews.
by June 05, 2004
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May 18 Word of the Day
When you think up something brilliantly righteous while baked.
X: I had this great highdea last night
Y: You clearly were philosopher stoned.
by TripleWest September 03, 2012
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a literal English translation of the Chinese phrase zhǐ lǎohΗ” (simplified Chinese: ηΊΈθ€θ™Ž; traditional Chinese: η΄™θ€θ™Ž), meaning something that seems as threatening as a tiger, but is really harmless.
"All reactionaries are paper tigers." - Mao Zedong
by fettfan91 April 27, 2010
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One who appears tough on the surface but is really a wimp.
He annoys me because constanly brags about being so tough, but at least he can back up his statements, unlike a paper tiger.
by Word of the Day June 07, 2004
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1. A person who appears knowledgeable on a certain topic, or even has a degree in a certain topic, but actually shows no ability and lacks some of the basic knowledge in said topic.

2. An idea that is still on paper and is having a hard time being made into reality


an idea that sounds amazing on paper but is completely extreme, unrealistic and/or will definitely not work in practice, and also likely hasn't come to fruition.
Worker A: What happened to that guy that was hired last week?
Worker B: He was fired a few days ago. Despite his master's degree, he was completely incompetent in his field. Turns out he was a paper tiger who just plagiarized other people for his degree.
Person A: How's that project coming along?
Person B: It's a bit of a struggle, all I got right now is a paper tiger. I think I've almost figured out what went wrong, though.
The Fontus self-filling water bottle is a a paper tiger that claims that it will fill itself in an hour, but can't possibly do so because of basic thermodynamics.
by AtomHeartFather August 24, 2020
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seemingly overwhelming paperwork or paper clutter
I want to tidy up my home, but first I have to tame the paper tiger.
via giphy
by MamaNette March 08, 2019
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