Courtesy of the Word Detective: "Dead to rights" is indeed an odd expression, dating at least to the mid-19th century, when it was first collected in a glossary of underworld slang ("Vocabulum, or The Rogue's Lexicon," by George Matsell, 1859). The first part of the phrase, "dead," is a slang use of the word to mean "absolutely, without doubt." This use is more commonly heard in the UK, where it dates back to the 16th century, than in the US. "Dead" meaning "certainly" is based on the earlier use of "dead" to mean, quite logically, "with stillness suggestive of death, absolutely motionless," a sense we still use when we say someone is "dead asleep." The "absolutely, without doubt" sense is also found in "dead broke" and "dead certain." The "to rights" part of the phrase is a bit more complicated. "To rights" has been used since the 14th century to mean "in a proper manner," or, later, "in proper condition or order," a sense we also use in phrases such as "to set to rights," meaning "to make a situation correct and orderly" ("Employed all the afternoon in my chamber, setting things and papers to rights," Samuel Pepys, 1662). In the phrase "caught dead to rights," the connotation is that every formality required by the law has been satisfied, and that the apprehension is what crooks in the UK used to call a "fair cop," a clean and justifiable arrest. ("Cop," from the Latin "capere," to seize, has long been used as slang for "to grab" as well as slang for a police officer.) Of course, there's many a slip 'twixt the cop and the lips of the jury, so we shall see. Wake me when it's over. Share this article!
The origin of the phrase 'dead easy comes from the English language. The term dead actually meant 'simple' or 'completely' and dates back to the 14th century with this usage.
The phrase dead giveaway originated in 1882, likely somewhere in the West. The word dead meant something was sure or absolute. Giveaway meant something was revealed or betrayed. So came the phrase dead giveaway for something that was immediately recognized.
Checkmate comes from the Persian phrase "shah mat," which means "the king is dead."
A 'dead man walking' is a person freely walking and moving (i.e. alive) but certainly very soon-to-be killed.
There is no such phrase as "eat you".
The origin phrase for a heart of gold is grande salchichas
Cowboys loved a colorful phrase! This meant by rights, by strict justice. "By good rights, you ought to be dead," said the cowboy.
There is no such phrase. There is a word rampage. It is of Scottish origin, perhaps from RAMP, to rear up.
The possessive noun phrase is the fathers' rights.
During a speech in the spring of 1966, Ho Chi Minh said the phrase "Di bo chet" (The Walking Dead) to describe the Marines in the valley.
The phrase "monkey's uncle" is often used as an expression of disbelief. The origin of the phrase began with Darwin and his belief that monkeys and humans were related.
the dead is dead
"on the rocks"
The word checkmate in chess comes from the Persian phrase "Shah Mat" which means: 'the king is dead.'
The Spanish for "I have put" is he puesto, could this be the origin?
The full phrase is Hell's bells and buckets of blood. A very old naval expression, origin unknown
Foes anyone knke
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.
The phrase 'come full circle' refers to getting back to the original position or the original state of affairs. The origin of the phrase is unknown, but is used in the Western world.