Learn the Origin of Common Sayings With The Phrase Finder
January 18, 2007
If your job responsibilities include putting words to paper or e-mail, from time to time you may be stuck on just the right thing to say.
Or, like me, you might read a saying or phrase in a letter or book that catches your attention because, from a lack of context, you don't know where it originated or how it came to be.
The UK-based site The Phrase Finder lists some 1,200 common sayings, proverbs and idioms and their origins. You may be surprised to learn, as I was, about the most common sources of English idioms:
- The sea
- The Bible
For example, you can learn how the making of felt hats, using mercury compounds, was responsible for the phrase "as mad as a hatter."