Download 2107 Curious Word Origins, Sayings and Expressions from by Charles Earle Funk, Tom Funk PDF

By Charles Earle Funk, Tom Funk

Why do humans "take forty winks" and never 50...or 60, or 70? Did a person actually "let the cat out of the bag" at one time limit? Has somebody truly "gone on a wild goose chase"? discover the solutions to those questions and plenty of extra during this huge, immense assortment, constructed from 4 bestselling titles: A Hog on Ice, Thereby Hangs a story, Heavens to Betsy! and Horsefeathers and different Curious phrases. Dr. Funk, editor-in-chief of the Funk & Wagnalls regular Dictionary sequence, unearths the occasionally impressive, frequently a laugh, and continually attention-grabbing roots of greater than 2,000 vernacular phrases and expressions. From "kangaroo court docket" to "one-horse town", from "face the song" to "hocus-pocus," it truly is an wonderful linguistic journey.

Show description

Read or Download 2107 Curious Word Origins, Sayings and Expressions from White Elephants to a Song & Dance PDF

Best dictionaries & thesauruses books

Websters Macedonian - English Thesaurus Dictionary

When you are studying Macedonian, this ebook used to be now not created for you, and also you are not buy it. It used to be created for thoroughly fluent mother-tongue audio system of Macedonian who already recognize the total which means of Macedonian phrases, yet who have to learn the way a unmarried English translation of a Macedonian notice could have ambiguous meanings within the English language.

The New Unger's Bible Dictionary

Unger’s Bible Dictionary has been one of many bestselling Bible dictionaries out there given that its advent in 1957. Now this widespread vintage is extra necessary than ever. Updated and elevated through revered Bible experts together with R. ok. Harrison, Howard F. Vos, and Cyril J. Barber, The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary is full of the most up-tp-date scholarship.

Extra resources for 2107 Curious Word Origins, Sayings and Expressions from White Elephants to a Song & Dance

Sample text

47 or fetch) over the coals Until comparatively recent times the sin of heresy was, in many countries, punishable by death. In England, during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, one found guilty of departing from the creed and tenets of the church might be condemned to death by burning. Thus, the earliest uses of this expression, back in the six­ teenth century, referred to the literal punishment of heretics­ one would be fetched over the coals literally unless he speedily reformed his actions and beliefs.

But it comes straight from Old English; it then meant, as now, a payment, or, especially, one's share in the cost of some entertainment; later it came SO mean also a tax. Hence, "to go scot free" is, literally, to be free of payment or tax. a bolt from the blue It is a bolt of lightning from the clear, blue sky that is meant. Such a phenomenon is, at least, unexpected and is also startling. Thus the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was a bolt from the blue, in the figurative sense. Literary record of the use of the saying dates only to 1888, but it is likely that it existed in common speech many years earlier.

The sole right of the common people to enter these forests without permission was, it is said, for the removal of dead wood from the ground or dead branches from the trees; of the latter, only such branches as could be brought down "by hook or by crook," that is, by the use of no stouter instrument than a reaper's hook or a shepherd's crook. But in order to satisfy the meaning, "by fair means or foul," we must assume that some of the ancient shepherds found an excuse to tend their sheep with crooks that were exceedingly long or unusually heavy.

Download PDF sample

Rated 4.03 of 5 – based on 37 votes