Category Archives: word play

Do You Know These Words and Phrases?

Inexpressibles ~ Etymology Compare to unmentionables ‎(“underwear”). Geri Walton at her Unique Histories from the 18th and 19th Centuries tells us “That part of the dress which it is now unlawful to name, seems of old to have had the … Continue reading

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The Lovely World of the English Language ~ Do You Know These Idioms?

Are you like me? Do you wonder from where a particular phrase originates? I am often in a position to search out a phrase or a word to determine whether it is too modern for my writings set in the … Continue reading

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Are You Familiar with These Words and Phrases?

Bell the Cat ~ To hang a bell around a cat’s neck to provide a warning. Figuratively, the expression refers to any task that is difficult or impossible to achieve. This explanation comes from Phrase Finder. This expression ultimately derives from the … Continue reading

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Are You Familiar with These Words and Phrases?

The words and phrases below are ones I can across in a “more traditional” Regency romance I was reading leisurely, and thought I would share some of the less common ones. Enjoy! Here and Thereian is one who has no … Continue reading

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Colorful, Colored, and Colorless Words: Fixing Writing Errors

Do you recall the dreaded 500-words’ essay often assigned by English teachers? Do you also recall the sinking feeling of coming up with 500 words on a subject for which you held no opinion? Do you also recall writing something … Continue reading

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Are You Familiar with These Phrases and Words?

Today we will look at phrases/words we have inherited from England. Go to the Dickens! (or) What the Dickens! Believe it or not, neither phrase has anything to do with the Victorian novelist, Charles Dickens. Actually, “dickens” comes to us … Continue reading

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Do You Know The Origin of These Words and Phrases?

Three Sheets to the Wind – Urban Dictionary defines this phrase to mean “to be explicitly drunk; inebriated.” The origin is likely found in practicality: Sheets actually refer to the ropes that are used to secure a ship’s sail. If the … Continue reading

Posted in Age of Chaucer, Canterbury tales, etymology, history, Jane Austen, real life tales, tall tales, word choices, word origins, word play, writing | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments