- Why do we say dead as a doornail?
- Who first said when pigs fly?
- What does the expression pig in a poke mean?
- What does to hit below the belt mean?
- What does cats in the bag mean?
- Why do we say fit as a fiddle?
- What US city was once called Pig’s Eye?
- What does fell swoop mean?
- Who let the cat out of the bag origin?
- Why do we say Bob’s your uncle and Fanny’s your aunt?
- Is it one fell swoop or foul swoop?
- Where did the phrase in a pig’s eye come from?
- Why is a paper bag called a poke?
- What does the expression in a pig’s eye mean?
- Can you eat pig eyes?
Why do we say dead as a doornail?
Dead as a doornail is a phrase which means not alive, unequivocally deceased.
The term goes back to the 1300s, the phrase dead as a doornail is found in poems of the time.
It is thought that the phrase dead as a doornail comes from the manner of securing doornails that were hammered into a door by clenching them..
Who first said when pigs fly?
John Withals’sThe original version of the succinct ‘pigs might fly’ was ‘pigs fly with their tails forward’, which is first found in a list of proverbs in the 1616 edition of John Withals’s English-Latin dictionary – A Shorte Dictionarie for Yonge Begynners: Pigs fly in the ayre with their tayles forward.
What does the expression pig in a poke mean?
Relation to other idioms and expressions The English colloquialisms such as turn out to be a pig in a poke or buy a pig in a poke mean that something is sold or bought without the buyer knowing its true nature or value, especially when buying without inspecting the item beforehand.
What does to hit below the belt mean?
To say something that is often too personal, usually irrelevant, and always unfair: “To remind reformed alcoholics of their drinking problem is to hit below the belt.” The expression comes from boxing, in which it is illegal to hit an opponent below the belt.
What does cats in the bag mean?
In English, the more common phrase is “(to buy a) pig in the poke” (a “poke” being an older word for a bag or sack), meaning to buy something without verifying its contents or value first; the “cat in the sack” (a phrase more common to other European languages) refers to an item of lesser quality or value that has been …
Why do we say fit as a fiddle?
Of course the ‘fiddle’ here is the colloquial name for violin. ‘Fit’ didn’t originally mean healthy and energetic, in the sense it is often used nowadays to describe the inhabitants of gyms. When this phrase was coined ‘fit’ was used to mean ‘suitable, seemly’, in the way we now might say ‘fit for purpose’.
What US city was once called Pig’s Eye?
Saint PaulIn 1841, the settlement was named Saint Paul by a French priest, in honor of Paul the Apostle—but locals still commonly referred to it as “Pig’s Eye.” In fact, rumor has it that the city almost became officially, legally named “Pig’s Eye” when Minnesota became a territory in 1849 and the city was named as its capital.
What does fell swoop mean?
Also at one fell swoop. All at once, in a single action, as in This law has lifted all the controls on cable TV in one fell swoop. This term was used and probably invented by Shakespeare in Macbeth (4:3), where the playwright likens the murder of Macduff’s wife and children to a hawk swooping down on defenseless prey.
Who let the cat out of the bag origin?
One suggestion is that the phrase refers to the whip-like “cat o’nine tails”, an instrument of punishment once used on Royal Navy vessels. The instrument was purportedly stored in a red sack, and a sailor who revealed the transgressions of another would be “letting the cat out of the bag”.
Why do we say Bob’s your uncle and Fanny’s your aunt?
The origins are uncertain, but a common theory is that the expression arose after Conservative Prime Minister Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury (“Bob”) appointed his nephew Arthur Balfour as Chief Secretary for Ireland in 1887, an act of nepotism which was apparently both surprising and unpopular.
Is it one fell swoop or foul swoop?
In fact the phrase does have some connection to birds – but both “one fowl swoop” and “one foul swoop” are incorrect. The original phrase is actually “one fell swoop”. The phrase is an old one. It may have been coined by Shakespeare in 1605, or he may merely have popularised it.
Where did the phrase in a pig’s eye come from?
“In a pig’s eye” is an informal American English expression from the 19th century to mean expressing scornful disbelief at a statement — in short, incredulity. A variation is “in a pig’s ear,” also from the USA around the 1850s. The original (1650s) English expression is just “a pig’s eye” (no ‘in’).
Why is a paper bag called a poke?
A sack; a bag. The word poke meaning “bag” is not confined to just the American South—in many parts of Scotland, poke bag is still used of a little paper bag for carrying purchases like candy. … Poke first appears in English in the 1200s and probably comes from Old North French, the northern dialect of Old French.
What does the expression in a pig’s eye mean?
(in a) pig’s eye (also ear, arse) : used as a derisive retort expressing emphatic disbelief, rejection, or denial. The listed uses are: 1847 J. J. Oswandel Notes Mexican War (1885) iii.
Can you eat pig eyes?
“I really don’t recommend you chew a pig eyeball, but if you do, there comes a point where it bursts, and there’s hot-cooked eyeball juice hitting you in the mouth and that’s quite challenging,” said Gibbon. Eating with Cannibals, part of National Geographic Channel’s Expedition Week, airs Monday night.