"A feast for phrase detectives...that will enliven debates and illuminate issues."
"This marvelous reference has grown by about a third from its predecessor... will appeal to researchers...having [this information] in one book is hard to beat."
—American Reference Books Annual
"...couple[s] etymology with humor... recommended..."
"...diverse...highly readable...Linguists, historians, and word connoisseurs will appreciate this resource...will add value to any collection supporting language studies...Highly recommended."
The most comprehensive single-volume reference of its kind, Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins, Fourth Edition has been completely updated and expanded and now contains definitions and origins of more than 15,000 words and expressions. This encyclopedia features anecdotes and information on the development of a wide range of words, including slang, proverbs, animal and plant names, place-names, nicknames, historical expressions, foreign-language expressions, and phrases from literature. The emphasis throughout is on words and expressions whose origins are not adequately explained, or not addressed at all, in standard dictionaries. Approximately 2,500 new entries have been added to this edition, ranging from Aardsma to zounds.
New and updated entries include
All she wrote
I.E.D. (improvised explosive device)
Read my lips
Rome wasnÕt built in a day
We who are about to die salute you
and much more
Entertaining and authoritative, Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins, Fourth Edition is a valuable resource for students, writers, and language lovers alike.
Contents: Preface to the Fourth Edition • Preface to the Original Edition • Abbreviations for the Most Frequently Cited Authorities • Entries A-Z • Index
About the Author: Robert Hendrickson is the author of more than 25 books, including The Facts On File Dictionary of American Regionalisms. He lives in Peconic, New York.