I saw the phrase “the man with the monocle” in the following sentence of the article titled “Five myths about millionaires,” appearing in Washington Post September 24th issue:
“This past week, President Obama tried to sell his new “millionaires’ tax” to the Rust Belt. But who are the millionaires Obama is talking about? And will a tax on them help the economy? Let’s examine a few presumptions about the man with the monocle on the Monopoly board.”
The last line revived my vague memory that the chairman of a New York private bank and murderous villain, Bryce Fenston in Jeffery Archer’s mystery, “False Impression” used to wear a monocle.
I checked “man with the monocle” on Cambridge, Merriam-Webster, and Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, none of which registers “man with the monocle” as an idiom associated with “monocle,” but Wikipedia provides explanation of “monocle” as:
During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the monocle was generally associated with wealthy upper-class men. Combined with a morning coat and a top-hat, the monocle completed the costume of the stereotypical 1890s capitalist.
From Wikipedia, I understand “man with the monocle” means “wealthy upper-class man.” However, is “man with the monocle” an idiom or just a figurative expression?
If I used “man with the monocle” in colloquial conversation instead of “wealthy man,” does it sound odd or pedantic?