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1of
8 a—used as a function word to indicate a particular example belonging to the class denoted by the preceding noun <the city of Rome> b—used as a function word to indicate apposition <that fool of a husband>
[M-W's Col. Dic.]

I couldn't see any apposition in that fool of a husband. Are that and fool in apposite relation to each other?

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Comments  
The fool and the husband are in apposition. You could equally say:
That fool committed a murder.

The husband commited a crime.
Hi Jackson
No, that isn't a noun. Fool and husband are nouns and thus husband is "a particular example" of a fool - to use the wording of your dictionary.Emotion: smile Learning things like this is of little avail in your language acquisition efforts, though.
CB
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Now I could not understand the meaning of fool of a husband. Please help me.
he's a fool husband, he's a husband who is also a fool
What does of stand for in that expression?
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belonging
he's a fool which belongs to the set/crowd of husbands
he's a fool which belongs in the husbands' set/crowd
Hi,
it's just an idiom used to say "that husband who is a fool". But I think there's something interesting about this idiom, which I am not sure about.

1) Additional particles go before the first noun:
I saw your idiot of a sister. I saw that idiot of a sister of yours.
NOT: I saw the idiot of your sister / I saw that idiot of your sister

2) This idiom is not used in the plural:
I saw your idiots of parents. (?)
I like her idiots of brothers. (?)

To find out if I'm right or not, I'm afraid we need a native speaker. Emotion: smile
The dictionary definition is simply calling attention to a certain grammatical construction in which you can say that Y is an X (The husband is a fool.) as a subordinate thought within a bigger sentence by using the structure X of a Y. (that fool of a husband). X and Y are the terms in apposition.
a prince of a man, a fool of a husband, a devil of a problem say the man is a prince (prince-like), the husband is a fool, the problem is a devil (very difficult). And this kind of expression in used within a larger sentence, thus:
Her grandfather is a prince of a man.
That fool of a husband has gambled away his paycheck again.
If we do that, we'll have a devil of a problem with the employees.
The structure itself is not very productive in English. That is, they are fairly fixed idiomatic expressions, and it's probably best just to remember them when you encounter them. I wouldn't recommend trying to make up new ones.
CJ
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