‘Caroline Taggart has carved out a niche for herself in user-friendly, wittily written factual books.’ – Yorkshire Post
The huge variety of colourful phrases contained in the English language are notoriously varied and, often, notably odd. From blue-blooded (an invention of aristocratic Spaniards) to limelight (a way of lighting Victorian theatres), passing an exam with flying colours (an image from sailing ships) to winning hands down (from horse racing), the fascinating expressions that make up our language are explored in Humble Pie and Cold Turkey.
In this highly entertaining book, language enthusiast and Sunday Times best-selling author Caroline Taggart browses through thousands of years of history to shed light on why we use the words and phrases we do. Arranged by themes including food, the household, childhood, romance and more, this intriguing book looks at the origins of our language from their historical context. For example, did you know that:
If you rest on your laurels, you’re imitating a complacent Roman general?
If you eavesdrop, you’re likely to get wet?
If you’re taken aback, you should, strictly speaking, be a sailing ship?
If you’re galvanized into action, you’re behaving like Frankenstein’s monster?
Humble Pie and Cold Turkey will prompt you to question the downright bizarre idioms we use to express ourselves, and answer questions you may never have thought to ask. Including why turkeys need to be cold and how pies came to be humble.