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origin of sayings


Maria Giunta from Sydney, Australia on August 02, 2013: It's so interesting to hear how idioms came about. Some of these famous sayings have become second nature to us all. The origin of the word is obscure, but because it also applied to a tavern or drinking place, it may go back to the Irish word shebeen for a ramshackle drinking establishment.

The price is high. Besides, there is an old saying too, repetition for emphasis... but I say, repetition for remembering... because the older I get, the less I recall! Meaning to reveal a secret, "letting the cat out of the bag" finds its roots in 18th-century street fraud.

It's truth. Such a nice community. These days, angry parents might threaten to “read the riot act” to their unruly children.

A buff-coat was a light browny/yellow leather tunic worn by English soldiers up until the 17th century. It could be a pat on the back as a token, or sign, of friendship, or a marked piece of lead that could be exchanged for money. Now, you could take this literally, in that Fred actually walked up to and kicked a bucket in his path.

Question: What is the origin of the phrase, “on the cheap?”. Tim Johnson Salem Oregon on January 06, 2017: I got to wondering how the phrase b-line or bee line came in to existence. The origins on this idiom are actually rather simple.

"Beam Me Up, Scotty!" I did know the origins of a couple of these but not many.

The theory it came from typesetting certainly sounds feasible. When talking about informants to the police. The Riot Act was a British law passed in 1714 to prevent riots. What a bargain….

Her mother admonished, "Do not count your chickens before they are hatched.". If you pass the acid test, you didn’t dissolve—you’re the real thing. I had always attributed the "minding your Ps and Qs " to being always dilligent in using "Please" and "Thank (Q)you"!

The soapbox that people mount when they “get on a soapbox” is actually a soap box, or rather, one of the big crates that used to hold shipments of soap in the late 1800s. In local language, it can mean lying or telling an untruth.

I happen to think many may have evolved along the way, perhaps starting out as one thing, and being 'adopted,' as it were, for other things along the way where it fit.

:P. Marie Hurt from New Orleans, LA on August 07, 2013: I had no idea about the origins of most of these phrases. JoyLevine (author) from 3rd Rock from the Sun on July 12, 2014: Another origin for the term 'dead ringer' comes from horses. BuzzFeed Staff.

Eric Partridge in his Dictionary of Catchphrases suggests that the term originated as a translation of a similar expression used by German actors: Hals- und Beinbruch (literally, "a broken neck and a broken leg.")

'Namby Pamby' was a nickname invented in the eighteenth century by poets John Gay, Alexander Pope and Jonathan Swift to mock the English poet and playright Ambrose Philips.

So, "top of the world" would incorporate this cultural norm and use "top" to mean good. The wig would come out big and fluffy due to the moisture and heat inside the loaf of bread. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

JoyLevine (author) from 3rd Rock from the Sun on August 05, 2013: The closest I could come to a true origin of "Who opened the gates?" Most of us use idioms every day and yet many of us don't know how these same phrases originated. However, they were not easy to secure on a moving ship. Just what it says—a wire for baling hay.

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The German phrase traces back to early aviators, possibly during World War I, spreading gradually to the German stage and then to British and American theaters.

JoyLevine (author) from 3rd Rock from the Sun on November 25, 2013: Thank you for your kind comments. Instituted in 1715, the Riot Act gave the British government the authority to label any group of more than 12 people a threat to the peace. Kind of gruesome, isn't it? Straight talking and methodical, "Smashing Grammar" (Our Grammar Book, 2019), cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey, it's, if you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours.

'Chow down' was first used by the U.S. military during WWII. A grapevine is a system of twisty tendrils going from cluster to cluster. That big pile of cut-outs isn’t going to sew itself together!

In fact, there was so much hype about this for awhile that there were quite an array of devices invented so that the undead could escape their coffins in case they buried prematurely.

The paintings may consist of just a person's face. What they did in order to solve this problem was to dig up the existing coffins out of the ground and take the bones to a bone house. The image is more that your task is well defined and ready to be tackled, but all the difficult parts are yours to get to.

Although not true, the crying crocodiles later made it into Shakespeare’s novel. I appreciate the time you took in responding. So, lets explore some common idioms and phrases and take a look at the meanings and origins behind them. They would sip some ale, listen to people's conversations, thus learning what was on people's minds and what their concerns were. Awesome hub!

The sheets in question were actually the ropes that held down the sails, so if all three ropes were loose, the sails would billow about like a drunken sailor. As a writer, I started reading in more detail, this lead to me examine how language is developed. However, one viable theory is that it came from serving an unwanted guest a cold shoulder of mutton that had been sitting out for awhile, as opposed to a nice hot meal like the rest of the guests. phrases, sayings, idioms and expressions at.

It's quite simple, really. You earned my vote for the Rising Star accolade. He then used green eyed monster again in his most famous play about jealousy – Othello. Dawes was the second to escape, although the account is that he became lost in the dark and never made it to Concord.

For English Idioms, Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions by Stanley J. St. Clair is great.

"Let the cat out of the bag." If I hear a phrase, that I don’t know the origin of, I have to look it up. The earliest recording of the phrase in 1866, states "Eat an apple on going to bed, And you'll keep the doctor from earning his bread" is from the former.

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