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English definition of “read the runes”

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read the runes

UK literary
to understand what will happen in the future, by looking at what is happening now: He was the first of the Eastern leaders to read the runes and make political changes to stay in power.
Translations of “read the runes”
in Chinese (Traditional) 看清未來的趨勢, 掌握未來的態勢…
in Chinese (Simplified) 看清未来的趋势, 掌握未来的态势…
(Definition of read the runes from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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