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Dictionary of Idioms and Their Origins

Paperback / ISBN-13: 9780857834010

Price: £9.99

ON SALE: 3rd November 2016

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The English language contains a great store of idioms that can be used in creative and forceful ways. Dictionary of Idioms examines over 400 such phrases, tracing each one’s source and history through a rich supply of examples. New entries in the revised edition include ‘play fast and loose’ (from a 16th-century fairground game), ‘head over heels’ (a totally illogical variation on the more sensible ‘heels over head’) and knee-high to a grasshopper (which won out over knee-high to a mosquito and knee-high to a toad). Mini-essays scattered through the book expand on such broader themes as What is an idiom? National Rivalries and The Old Curiosity Shop of Linguistics. Linda and Roger Flavell combine scholarly accuracy with an unfailing understanding of the snippets of information that intrigue the browser.

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