9781856261418 / 1856261417

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About the book:

The proverbs selected for this reference book, intended for anyone who delights in and studies words, all have a tale to tell. Etymologies go back to the earliest origins, though there are often conflicting accounts of how an expression came into being, and changes of meaning or usage are recorded: "Tread on a worm and it will turn" probably originated in the days when "worm" also meant "viper"; "Good wine needs no bush" is a reference to the lax interpretation of licensing laws common during 19th-century village fairs. The authors' other books include "Current English Usage" and "Dictionary of Idioms".

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