What is the origin of the phrase a call to arms?
this means to be called to help or called to service in the area or gifts of help.
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The saying is actually "Desperate times call for desperate measures." The origin of this proverb: This is a variant of the proverb "Desperate diseases must have desperate remedies." This goes back to the Latin _extremis malis extrema remedia_ 'extreme remedies for extreme ills.' The earlies…t English version given by the Concise Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs is the following: 1539 R. Taverner tr. _Erasmus' Adages_ 4 A stronge disease requyreth a stronge medicine. (Thanks to Fred Shapiro, Yale Law Library) ( Full Answer )
Answer . The first I heard the use of this phrase was in reference to a pack of wolves and their leader. In the wild, male wolves fight to be the top dog and have the rights to the best females. Somehow, it also became applied to people.
Answer . It is an old and very racist term that should never have been used at the time, and definitely should not be used today. When European-ancestry settlers began to move into the American West and encountered native residents. Some of the white settlers claimed that when they took gifts …from the natives, the natives later wanted them back, so the derogatory term "indian giver" arose to describe someone who provides you with something and then tries to reclaim it. .......... One of the reasons this started is because it is/was Native American custom that when a gift was given, a gift of similar value was to be given back. If it could not be given back, the original gift was expected to be returned. Europeans could not grasp this so the belittled the Native Americans. What we do not understand, we make fun of.. Also, it was and still known among Native Americans, that a gift given it is given. No Strings attached to the gift given Early Americans of EU descendants always thought the Native Americans were very dumb or very stupid. So when a barter was negotiated and the EU descendant wanted to back out of an agreed trade, they would say and use the term it was a Indian giver deal. ( Full Answer )
Conniption is from an old English word, 'canapshus' meaning rage orill tempered. When put together with the English word fit, it wouldrefer to a fit of rage or a fit of anger.
Kung Fu. Caine's teacher, Master Po, called him "grasshopper" as a child. Because he would achieve such concentration, he could close his eyes and listen to the grasshoppers.
Answer . It's probably someone who misunderstands the origins of the original term. Middle eastern religions, including Judaism and Islam, would sacrifice animals as a part of their religious observences. Sacrificing a lamb was a common practice..
Although the general consensus to the origin of "Dressed to the Nines" is unknown; consider the meaning to be simply a reference of scale. " On a scale of one to ten; you are dressed to the nines" Since perfection can never be attained, nine would be the absolute best. The plural version on nine "Ni…nes" is nothing more than people trying to make more of the number nine and fractionalizing it for further impact. With this definition in mind, every use of the term would make sense. The phrases 'to the nines', or 'to the nine', were used to indicate perfection - the highest standards. That was in use in the 18th century, as here from William Hamilton's Epistle to Ramsay , 1719: . How to the nines they did content me.. In fact, the earliest reference of "to the nine" may not have been "to the nine" at all. A phrase similar to "to the nine" appears in a translation of Voyages de Jehan de Mandeville chevalier , which appeared anonymously in France circa 1357 and is attributed to Sir John Mandeville. In the English translation of this work is found the line: Sir king! ye shall have war without peace, and always to the nine degree , ye shall be in subjection of your enemies, and ye shall be needy of all goods. The original work was written in Anglo-Norman French and is much translated. Whether the 'to the nine' is a literal translation from the original or whether it was added by translators later, and possibly as late as 1900, isn't clear. It doesn't seem likely that the phrase existed in English as early as the 14th century, not to appear again in print until the 18th century. However, it should be noted that the French word for the number nine is neuf , but neuf is also the French word meaning "new" in the sense of being brand new. It is therefore possible that when translating the passage above, the correct literary translation might have been: Sir king! ye shall have war without peace, and always to the newest degree , ye shall be in subjection of your enemies, and ye shall be needy of all goods. In this case "to the newest degree" would refer to facing an enemy with the latest, never before seen weapons and strategies for war. Therefore, it could have been a simple translation error that led to the expression "to the nine." 'To the nines' has now gone out of use and only persists in the more specific 'dressed to the nines' (or sometimes 'dressed up to the nines'). Dressed to the nines, or dressed up to the nines are merely a version of the phrase that is applied to clothing. That is first cited in John C. Hotten's A Dictionary of Modern Slang, Cant, and Vulgar Words , 1859 as: . DRESSED UP TO THE NINES', in a showy 'recherchÃ©' manner.. Many theories abound as to what prompted the phrase to be used in reference to dress. The fact that the prior phrase to the nines had been in existence for at least 150 years before we see dressed to the nines makes it obvious that the derivation of the variant version of the phrase need have had no connection with the number nine. Despite this, various attempts have been made to guess at the origin. One has it that tailors used nine yards of material to make a suit (or according to some authors a shirt). The more material you had the more status, although nine yards seems generous even for a fop. Another commonly repeated explanation comes from the reportedly smart uniforms of the The Wiltshire Regiment (Duke of Edinburgh's) 99th Foot, which was raised in 1824. The problem with these explanations is that they come with zero hard evidence to support them, apart from a reference to the number nine (or even 99, which seems to be stretching the cloth rather thinly). The regiment was raised in the early 19th century, which is the right sort of date for the phrase to begin to be used in the middle of that century. It is at least plausible that the to the nines phrase was matched with the 99 of the regiment's name to and reputation to coin dressed to the nines . As we have seen ad nauseam with similar attempts to explain "the whole nine yards," there are many things that come in groups of nine. Almost anything associated with the number has been at some point put forward as the origin of this phrase. The fact is, we aren't sure. While no one knows the origin of 'to the nines' it is worth noting that nine has been used as a superlative in other contexts. Classical mythology gave us the nine Muses of arts and learning. The Nine Worthies were drawn from the mythology, history and the Bible. This distinguished group was Joshua, David, Judas MaccabÃ¦us, Hector, Alexander, Julius CÃ¦sar, Arthur, Charlemagne, and Godfrey of Bouillon. We also have the nine days' wonder. Also known as a 'ninety-day wonder' for quickened passage of rank-rising military officers in times of war. All of the above would have been well-known when this phrase was coined. A more recent link between nine and excellence is 'cloud nine'. A further reference and possibly the origin is found in Naval uniforms. Uniforms are always referred to by numbers. The number 9 uniform or "Number Nines" has changed in definition over time and in some cases has been described as canvas like material as stiff as boards, and at others as "9's: White front and white shorts, worn with white top cap. Equivalent of 3's in whites ". A further description is [No 9 : White Dress, single breasted fully buttoned white tunic, white top cap, white shoes, medals] The U.S Navy does not use this system. ( Full Answer )
The saying "falling asleep" originates from the old english saying"ye old falleth to thine laying box" in which the sensation wasdeveloped of feeling like you are falling through the air.
The expression goes back to the theater of Shakespeare's time, when men criticized the acting by making noises that sounded like a fence full of cats.
\nWikipedia describes the English idiom "down to earth" as meaning "practical and realistic", implying a stable footing for one's behaviour. It's not difficult to imagine how the phrase came about if you think of it as having the same origins as "keep your feet on the ground". If you jump up in th…e air, it's not a stable position... gravity rather gets in the way and brings you... "down to earth"\n. \nThink of all the phrases meaning having or finding stability which are rooted in the same idea (actually even the word "rooted" implies the same thing):\n"He's a down to earth kinda guy", "Keeping your feet on the ground", "Coming back down to earth", "That idea is grounded in reality (the emphasis being on grounded here)"\n. \n...or those which imply instability by being away from planet Earth\n"That's all up in the air", "Head in the clouds" etc. ( Full Answer )
I got interested in this when reading a historical novel set in 1860s New York. The heroine wnet out on her birthday, alone, with a couple of dollars "mad money". I wondered what the origin of the phrase might be. I found an article that explained it. "Mad Money: A Semantic Change" by George Javo…r in American Speech, Vol. 50, No. 1/2, (Spring - Summer, 1975),. Apparently "mad money" was "noted as early as 1922 by Howard J. Savage (Dialect Notes 5: 148) at the end of an article on Bryn Mawr slang. Savage's definition is 'money a girl carries in case she has a row with her escort and wishes to go home alone.' " But it developed a second meaning: "By 1946, a second meaning of the term had been recorded by C. M. Woodard ("A Word-List from Virginia and North Carolina," PADS, no. 6, pp. 4-43). He gave the meaning already noted ('money taken along by a girl on a date to be used in case she falls out with her companion and wants to come home early,' p. 20), and then added: 'Also money used by a girl or woman for small purchases.' Among general dictionaries, Webster's Third was the first to record the term with both meanings. Its definitions are 'carfare carried by a girl on a date to provide a means of escaping her escort in the event of unwanted familiarities; broadly: a small sum carried by a woman for emergency use.' The second definition is similar to Woodard's, but it relates the sum used for "small purchases" to the sense of emergency implicit in the older meaning." The author then gave some of his students a "questionnaire that they completed asked: "What is your definition of mad money? If you know the term in more than one meaning, give both." An overwhelming number, 92 percent, gave as their answers a definition that is different from either of those in the dictionaries. This new meaning of mad money may be phrased thus: 'money to be spent FOOLISHLY, for some- thing you DON'T NEED, on the SPUR OF THE MOMENT or FRIVOLOUSLY, indeed CRAZILY.' One or more of the emphasized concepts appeared in practically every answer." Javor points out that the meanings of "mad" from angry to crazy allow this drift. His article was written in 1975. I wonder what "mad money" can mean now! ( Full Answer )
I believe it originated with food. A nut can be dipped in chocolate, allowed to cool, and then dipped again for a thicker coating of chocolate. Double dipping has come to mean getting more than your share, or getting paid twice for the same time or service. Someone who retires and then draws a pe…nsion, plus gets paid as a consultant related to their previous work is called a double-dipper. People who work on commission sometimes get paid for managing a client's account, and also get a commission for the buying or selling they do for the client. This is called double dipping and in some cases is unethical or illegal. In financial terms, double-dipping is when you get paid twice for the same work, get reimbursed twice for the same expense, or get paid twice from the same source (pension plus consulting). Example: Your employer sends you on a trip and pays for the expenses and then you deduct the cost of the travel as a business-related expense from your taxes - illegal! Back to food, in an episode of Seinfeld, George dips a chip in the communal dip bowl, bites off the covered portion and then dips the chip a second time. Another party goer has a fit because George's double-dipping is spreading germs. Where double dipping in other situations created higher quality, or richer food (double-dipped chocolates, or double batter dipped fried chicken), double dipping chips was ruining the food (dip). His behavior was considered rude, unethical or immoral. George is called a double-dipper as a derogatory epithet. A fight ensued. ( Full Answer )
"Plumb" refers to a "plumb-bob," a device used to make sure that a building is built straight up-and-down (not leaning). "Plumb straight" means "completely straight." In that way "plumb forgot" came to mean "completely forgot."
In the early 20th century, Nellie was a nickname for a femalehorse. A skittish horse was known as a nervous one, hence, nervousNellie.
From the U.S. Navy publication Nomenclature of Ships (John Snelling, 1981), the phrase "son of a gun" is described as:. In an attempt to keep down the large number of deserters in the British Navy, the sailors were kept on board their ships while in English ports. But "wives" were allowed on boar…d; one per man, with no questions asked. Cramped conditions on the ships caused the "ladies" to sling their hammocks between the guns in the 'tween decks. The phrase "son of a gun" originated here. In fact, the expression questioned the legitimacy of anyone. The old definition of a man-o'-war's man was "Begotten in the galley and born under a gun. Every hair a rope yarn, every tooth a marlin's spike, each finger a fishhook and in his blood, right good Stockholm tar." . However, the actual origin might just be another nautical myth. ( Full Answer )
That's the way a woman looks at you that shows she's sexually attracted. Bedrooms tend to be darker and the pupils expand. This creates an attraction that is built into the human psyche to protect and nurture.
Meaning: eager to listen; attentive . Origin: The ear is the organ by which a person hears. So, if we figuratively say that "you are all ears," it means that at that moment you are keenly listening to whatever is being said. It's as if no other part of your body mattered except your ears. This i…diom is about three centuries old. . Waiting with excitement to hear what the person has to say. . Example: "You said you had something important to tell me. I'm all ears!" ( Full Answer )
"Eric Partridge, "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases American andBritish," mentions some similar phrases that mean "How's your sexlife?" They refer to the male organs and are "low" phrases (hesays) of U.S. origin, dating from the 1920s."
Here is some info on the origin of both words, happy and birthday.. The word happy in happy birthday is to state that they want you to have a happy one, like in almost every saying (Happy Halloween, Happy New Year, etc.) related to holidays. In Merry Christmas, Merry means happy, so it would be "Ha…ppy" Christmas in other words. If happy wasn't in the saying happy birthday, there would just be Birthday. If instead of happy was Sad, it would be sad birthday, which nobody wants unless you invited a your arch enemy to your party, which nobody would do "I hope".. Every holiday starts on one day, and starts again on the exact same day in one year. Birthdays however, have the day officially marked on the day the person who marked it was born. If someone named Joe Ford was born on May 26, 1982, Joe would mark his birthday on May 26. Joe's DOB (Date Of Birth) is May 26, 1982 Your age is really how many of your holidays passed by minus DOB. This is where you get Birthday. Birth is the event that takes place when your born. A day is equal to 24 hours. Since Joe was born on May 26, 1982, The age increases by one on his birthday. Holidays are special days. Therefore, birthdays are days where the person who marked its age increases by one.. Did you know that companies or organizations have birthdays and births too? Anniversaries are used instead of birthdays. Births are the days something starts or the company opens its business to the public for the first time. If a new location starts in the same chain as another company, (Example: A new part of the Waffle House opens in Hollywood, California, [I'm not saying it did, I wouldn't know about it if it did] it would share the same Anniversary) it would share the same anniversary. The list below should help you.. Word A Word B Meanings. Birthday Anniversary Both mean Birthday. Birth (DOB) Day of Marriage/Launch/etc. (DOM/L/etc.) Day something starts/is born. What's the orgin of the words happy, birth, and day? See the table below.. Word Orgin. Happy [Middle English, from hap , luck. See http://www.answers.com/topic/hap .]. Day [Middle English dai, day , from Old English dÃ¦g .]. Birth [Middle English, probably of Scandinavian origin.]. Now you know all about the orgin Happy Birthday, what they mean in other words, and why we use them. If this wasn't enough, go to http://www.answers.com/ for more.. From Beckymax. ( Full Answer )
The phrase On The Arm came from the Mafia. To show their respects to the Mafia Boss who protected their neighborhood or fear of being extorted, the store owners would not allow them to pay for items. The store owners would take their right hand and brush it against their left arm as a way of… saying, "Forget about it" No charge, Free, (Fuhgeddaboudit) ( Full Answer )
I am aware of the literary example in Milton's Comus but there must have been an original meaning he borrowed when he wrote Comus. This phrase originated during the American Civil War. Today this phrase is one of hope and optimism-i.e. though the skies are dark, something good is still there. Orig…inally though, this phrase would have meant just the opposite. The "cloud" referred to was the plumes of smoke from the enemy artillery, and the "silver lining" was the glint of morning sun off the artillery in the background. Since many of the battles would start just before dawn, the soldiers were sometimes facing a confusing look at fog and smoke, in the predawn light. The veteran soldiers would tell the newcomers-"avoid the clouds with the silver lining", and soon those rookies would learn that "not every cloud has a silver lining" meaning they could head for the fog, which was doubly better as the haze was not from the artillery, and the fog itself offered some concealment. When the soldiers came home from the war, they would sometimes use the phrase "not every cloud has a silver lining" to mean that there were sometimes unexpected good things; but through the course of usage by those not knowledgeable of its origins, the "not" was soon dropped from the phrase. ( Full Answer )
There are a couple of explanations for this one:. One explanation says it originated in medieval times when physicians thought that the secretions of a frog could help heal a sore throat. A live frog head was put into the patient's mouth, and the frog was believed to draw out the infection into its… own body when it inhaled.. Another explanation is that years ago, people drank directly from ponds and streams, meaning there was always the fear that one could ingest an actual frog or frogspawn. It is believed that once the eggs hatched, one would experience a choking feeling when the young froglets were ready to come out. In the olden days, a travelling medicine merchant (i.e. quack) might have an assistant with a terrible cough (frog in the throat). As he administered a particular medicine supposed to cure all ills, the assistant would pretend to cough up a live frog, and then be pronounced cured. ( Full Answer )
The phrase dead giveaway originated in 1882, likely somewhere inthe West. The word dead meant something was sure or absolute.Giveaway meant something was revealed or betrayed. So came thephrase dead giveaway for something that was immediately recognized.
Henpecked husband is a phrase that originated from times when the wives of a ships captain would interfere with the daily duties of the ship. She was called a hen because that is what a female domestic fowl is called.
from poker games, when one would ante up clothing in lieu of cash. An especially unnecessary gambit when playing strip poker.
there was a time when it was customary for the groom to provide honey to the bride's father within the first full moon, thus it became known as the honeymoon phase
The phrase on the arm came from the Mafia. To show their respect to the Mafia Boss who protected their neighborhood or fear of being extorted, the store owners would not allow them to pay for items. The store owners would take their right hand and brush it against their left arm as a way of sa…ying, "Forget about it" No Charge, Free. (Fuhgeddaboudit) ( Full Answer )
1996 Summer Olympics when Kerri Strug was preparing to do a vault with a broken ankle, the camera flashed to her coach, Bela Karolyi shouting "You can do it!" With a Russian accent. It was parodied shortly thereafter by numerous Adam Sandler films, most recognizably Rob Sneider's line in "The Water …Boy". ( Full Answer )
It's not a phrase, and it's one word "armpit". Origin is from Old English earm "arm" and pytt "hole in the ground".
Literally, it's a fellow soldier Figuratively, it means someone who has shared a difficult, dangerous or stressful experience It can also be two soldiers that protect each other in a war
To be called 'on the carpet', i.e. for reprimand by superior, is early 1900's, American colloquial, (possible), from one's uncarpeted work area to carpeted offices of one's superior.
( thegamut ) 1The completerange or scope of something: the whole gamut of humanemotion . EXAMPLE SENTENCES Anger, jealousy, possessiveness, suspicion, aggression - Harryexperiences a whole gamut of human emotions, but seems to able tocontrol them much better that he did in The Phoenix. Her fa…ce could register the gamut of human emotions without everfully revealing her inner nature. These stories take you on an exciting journey, and you traverse awhole gamut of human experience and emotions that reflect thechanging Tamil milieu. ( Full Answer )
"Sweeps the nation" comes from the first PacMac game in the early 60s. In the game, PacMan is seen to use a broom and dustpan to get rid of the killer ghosts. Once the ghosts were dispatched, PacMan would move on to sweep up other areas of the game. When the entire nation had been swept, the game wo…uld end. Thus "sweep the nation" came to mean anything that effectively covered the entire nation in a small amount of time. (A full game only lasted a few minutes.) ( Full Answer )
History . The master's degree has had somewhat a "checkered reputation" (Spencer, p. 5) in the United States. Since its debut in the 1850s at the University of Michigan, for instance, critics have questioned the academic legitimacy of the master's degree, dismissing it as a stepping-stone to the …Ph.D. or as a consolation prize for those who failed to complete their doctoral studies. Although historically viewed as ancillary to the doctorate, the changing nature of the U.S. workplace has contributed to a redefinition of the purpose and value of the master's degree in the latter quarter of the twentieth century. According to Eileen O'Brien, this "transformation occurred on an institution-by-institution basis, with the degree being adapted to offer an educational program focusing on specialization, professionalization, and career enhancement and development" (p. 4). Findings from the Council of Graduate Schools' sponsored National Study of Master's Degrees, outlined in Clifton F. Conrad et al.'s 1993 work, established that the master's degree is now frequently recognized as a significant - and often terminal - credential designating advanced preparation and training in a specialized area of study, most commonly for the purposes of entry into or advancement within the world of professional practice. (Education Encyclopedia). For the source and more detailed information concerning your request, click on the related links section (Answers.com) indicated directly below this answer section. ( Full Answer )
The CEO was angry with the Manager. She laid himout in lavender. The lavender flower is well-known for its aroma. Atfunerals, this flower was placed close to the coffin in order tohide the smell of the body. In the past, in order to transfer thewonderful smell of the flower onto their clothes, ladi…es would beattheir freshly washed laundry with the branches of the plant. Theoriginal meaning of 'lay someone out in lavender' was to beat aperson till he became unconscious. With the passage of time, thebeating became more verbal than physical. ( Full Answer )
John Sweat Rock spoke about the idea of black as beautiful during one of his abolitionist speeches. As to where the actual phrase came from, no one is quite sure.
It originates from Ireland, and is generally used by Irish immigrants. I've often caught my English teacher, who was born in Ireland, saying "Thank you kindly", which gives away her Irish heritage. (Though her lilting accent is blatantly obvious, not to mention she listed her hobbies as "Irish danc…ing and stealing gold from leprechauns"...) ( Full Answer )
Lucky Fish comes from the rare novel by an Anglo Saxon temptress often referred to as the "lucky fish" due to her smell " figure it out" and her coming from Ireland! any geeks or nerds who think this is a wrong definition... just suck it up!!
Treading the boards, meaning to act in a play, originated in travelling theatrical troupes, who would erect temporary stages by laying boards flat on a low platform to elevate the actors so a large group could see all the action.
The origin is actually in terms of theater. When an actor/actress is supposed to cry in a particular scene they use the term "To make Crocodile Tears". Since crocodile's can't cry, it's sort of an inside slang between people of the theater. (The only way for Crocodile's to cry is for them to fake it…). ( Full Answer )
According to WikiAnswers, Ranga is a slang word used by teenage kids. It refers to a person with red hair, and it comes from the word Orangutan.
The crews of early sailing ship slept in hammocks. If the crew was needed to climb the masts, and adjust sails, they were ordered to "turn to". Turning in a hammock dumps you out- it meant get up, and get to work.
According to the Scots language dictionary 'jenny' can be sued to describe 'a lot of'. So a tea jenny is someone who drinks a lot of tea. I was called this as a small child.
Comes from the NBA Basketball player Manute Bol. During his practices with the Golden State Warriors Manute Bol would say "My Bad" when he made an error.
Its origins have been traced back to as early as 1393. It means to make do with what one has. This phrase was adopted by the wrestling world two or three hundred years ago (Lancashire wrestling) to distinguish free-style wrestling from Greco-Roman wrestling (which doesn't allow certain holds).
Before clothes drying machines were invented, wet clothes were hung out to dry on a clothesline.
Appears the term got its start as "svingskift" (literally: swing shift) in the offshore petroleum industry in Norway referring to a two-week tour during which employees work 12-hour days the first seven days and 12-hour nights the second, thus 'swinging' from a day shift to a night shift. The nex…t reference to 'swing-shift' appears during the Second World War, where factories were on a 24x7 schedule with 3 shifts, 'swing-shift' being the second shift of mid-afternoon to midnight. . ( Full Answer )
In 1893 Sir John Borisson first explored the jungles of southern Congo, here he met a friendly barrister named Reginald Chtchckfilmba. He hired him to act as his guide through the treacherous straits of Mordor. John had a high tech image-capturater which he was hoping to use to 'take a picture' of t…he notorious leopard-print gorilla, infamous for his despicable acts of a deeply sadistic and sexual nature. John poked him and thus was b*ggered. ( Full Answer )
Did artists ever charge by how many limbs they painted originating the phrase okay but it will cost you an arm and a leg?
It's a good thought, but no. The phrase is from the image of literally having to cut off your limbs to pay for something exorbitant. It's an exaggeration.
The phrase, "pot calling the kettle black," originated in the 1600's or the 17th century, it was originally used to point out hypocrisy in others. Authors and people who wrote plays used this comparison. Many find it to be racist or nonsense, but it makes very much sense if one knows that most pots …and kettles were made out of cast-iron (which turns black with heat) in the 17th century. ( Full Answer )