Doubting Thomas

Doubting Thomas
   Normally used in third person reference of a sceptical person, but it occurs as a vocative in Like Any Other Man, by Patrick Boyle. A housekeeper says to a man who is in the room where she is working: ‘Doubting Thomas. Standing there surveying. You’d think I meant to plunder all around me.’ This is a slight misuse of the term for a suspicious person rather than one who does not easily believe what he is told. The allusion is to New Testament, John (20:xx), where the story is told of Thomas’s doubt:
   Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ But he said to them, ‘Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in his side, I will not believe.’
   Thomas is later convinced that Jesus is alive.

A dictionary of epithets and terms of address . . 2015.

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  • doubting Thomas — ► NOUN ▪ a person who refuses to believe something without proof. ORIGIN with biblical allusion to the apostle Thomas (Gospel of John, Chapter 20) …   English terms dictionary

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