By Robert Allen
"Allen's Dictionary of English words" is the main finished survey of this quarter of the English language ever undertaken. taking up 6000 words, it explains their which means, explores their improvement and offers citations that diversity from the Venerable Bede to Will Self. Crisply and wittily written, this booklet is choked with memorable and astonishing element, even if displaying that 'salad days' comes from Antony and Cleopatra, that 'flavour of the month' originates in Nineteen Forties American ice cream advertising, or maybe that we have been 'calling a spade a spade' because the 16th century. "Allen's Dictionary of English words" is a part of the "Penguin Reference Library" and attracts on over 70 years of expertise in bringing trustworthy, necessary and transparent details to thousands of readers world wide - making wisdom everybody's estate.
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Extra resources for Allen's Dictionary of English Phrases
Xxxiii): semper in absentes felicior aestus amantes (‘Passion is always stronger in absent lovers’). In English the phrase appears as a line in a mid 19th cent. song ‘The Isle of Beauty’ by T Haynes Bayly (1797-1839). g. a 16th cent. source offers the assurance that ‘Absence works wonders’ and, more specifically, the diplomat and poet Sir Henry Wotton wrote in 1589 that ‘nothing was able to add more to [affection] than absence’. But contrary notions are also found: ‘three things there be that hinder love, that’s absence, fear, and shame’ (W Averell, Charles and Julia, 1581); and there is an implicit contradiction in out of sight, out of mind (see sight).
Come the (old) acid informal to be offensive or unpleasant; literally, to speak in an ‘acid’ manner: originally forces’ slang. Early 20th cent. H Hodge Cab, Sir? 1939 Any attempt to ‘come the acid’, so far from frightening the cabman, will probably result in the cabman’s giving him a little fatherly advice. put the acid on somebody Australian, informal to apply pressure on somebody for a favour. The connection, if any, with acid test is uncertain. Early 20th cent. acquaintance make the acquaintance (of somebody) to come to know somebody (replacing take acquaintance with, which referred to knowledge of people and things).
Add See add fuel to the fire; add insult to injury. adder See (as) deaf as an adder. admirable the admirable Crichton a person of great abilities or excellence. The original of the name was James Crichton, a 16th cent. Scottish nobleman noted for his scholarship and physical prowess, called ‘the admirable Crichton’ by Sir Thomas Urquhart in The Jewel (1652). It is also the title of a novel by Harrison Ainsworth (1827) and of a play (1902) by J M Barrie about a butler named Crichton who assumes responsibility when the household is shipwrecked (filmed in the UK in 1918 and 1957).
Allen's Dictionary of English Phrases by Robert Allen