The Dictionary of Clichés: A Word Lover's Guide to 4,000 Overused Phrases and Almost-Pleasing Platitudes
Some of the clichés introduced into the limelight include:
• Blood is thicker than water
• Monkey see, monkey do
• Brass tacks
• Burn the hour of darkness oil
• swap of heart
• ethical fiber
• by means of the book
Whether clichés get below your dermis or make you content as a clam, The Dictionary of Clichés is going the additional mile to supply a vital source for college kids, academics, writers, and a person with a prepared curiosity in language. And that’s meals for thought.
begun existence within the 16th century as to be taken slumbering. “Take Nappynge as Mosse toke his Meare” used to be the name of a 1569 ballad. The time period was once incorporated in John Ray’s proverb selection of 1670, within which Ray commented, “Who this Moss used to be isn't fabric to grasp. i guess a few such guy may locate his mare lifeless, and taking her to be merely asleep, may say, ‘Have I stuck you napping?’” but Shakespeare and different sixteenth-century writers used the word within the sleek feel of taking a person.
Ball utilized in softball. it all started for use figuratively within the Seventies. a brand new York occasions article approximately Senate majority chief invoice Frist, declaring that he must enlist aid from Democrats, quoted him announcing, “I can play hardball in addition to anybody.” play it via ear, to To improvise; to behave because the state of affairs calls for, with out develop making plans. This time period for enjoying instrumental track with out analyzing the notes from a ranking, yet easily going via the sound, dates from the 17th century.
the US. apparently in Christopher Morley’s Kitty Foyle (1939): “Their personal deepest existence will get to be a rat race.” rats abandon a sinking send clever (and disloyal) participants will wilderness a failing company sooner than it truly is too overdue. This statement was once made in the past approximately rats, which might stay on board devouring a ship’s shops within the carry till the send foundered in a hurricane or ran aground; then they'd disappear in order to not be drowned. The move to human desertion was once made earlier than 1600;.
Stooping to exploit lower-class language. notwithstanding, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow used it to express regret for high-flown language: “I occupied an analogous chamber that you simply did in former occasions, for it appeared to be the very optimum element of the living, the apogee, to be able to converse” (letter of March 2, 1824). sound as a bell In first-class . even if this simile doubtless rests at the assumption cracked bell is lifeless, it could possibly have outlived many others—among them sound as a most sensible, roach, greenback, and the.
stable enjoying” (“The Murders within the Rue Morgue,” 1841). A slightly more recent synonym is to play through the principles. via the by/bye incidentally, by the way, as in “By the by way of, I observed your brother there as well.” the second one through or bye during this archaic-sounding cliché initially denoted an aspect direction, whence the present experience of “in passing.” by way of the numbers In a prescribed, regimen type. The time period originated in the course of the Civil struggle, while recruits have been taught to load and hearth utilizing a sequence of numerical steps. For.