Red Herrings and White Elephants: The Origins of the Phrases We Use Every Day

3.71 avg rating
( 383 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780060843373: Red Herrings and White Elephants: The Origins of the Phrases We Use Every Day
View all copies of this ISBN edition:
 
 

Mad hatter . . . pie in the sky . . . egg on your face. We use these phrases every day, yet how many of us know what they really mean or where they came from?

From bringing home the bacon to leaving no stone unturned, the English language is peppered with hundreds of common idioms borrowed from ancient traditions and civilizations throughout the world. In Red Herrings and White Elephants, Albert Jack has uncovered the amazing and sometimes downright bizarre stories behind many of our most familiar and eccentric modes of expression:

If you happen to be a bootlegger, your profession recalls the Wild West outlaws who sold illegal alcohol by concealing slender bottles of whiskey in their boots. If you're on cloud nine, you owe a nod to the American Weather Bureau's classification of clouds, the ninth topping out all others at a mountainous 40,000 feet. If you opt for the hair of the dog the morning after, you're following the advice of medieval English doctors, who recommended rubbing the hair of a dog into the wound left by the animal's bite.

A delightful compendium of anecdotes on everything from minding your p's and q's to pulling out all the stops, Red Herrings and White Elephants is an essential handbook for language-lovers of all ages.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Albert Jack is a writer and researcher whose passion for solving the mysteries of the English language has taken him to dusty libraries throughout the world in search of the facts behind the phrases we use every day. He lives in Guilford, England.

Review:

“Amusing and informative...[takes] you on a trip through the most fascinating and richest regions of the English language.” (Knutsford Guardian (UK))

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Buy New View Book
List Price: US$ 16.99
US$ 5.99

Convert currency

Shipping: US$ 6.00
From Canada to U.S.A.

Destination, rates & speeds

Add to Basket

Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9781844544615: Red Herrings and White Elephants

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  1844544613 ISBN 13:  9781844544615
Publisher: John Blake Publishing Ltd, 2007
Softcover

9781532861949: Red Herrings & White Elephants: The Origins of the Phrases We Use Everyday

Create..., 2016
Softcover

9781843581291: Red Herrings And White Elephants: The Origins Of The Phrases We Use Every Day

Metro ..., 2004
Hardcover

9781843581536: Red Herrings and White Elephants

Metro ..., 2005
Softcover

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Jack, Albert
Published by Harper Collins 2004-01-01 (2004)
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
BookOutlet
(Thorold, ON, Canada)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper Collins 2004-01-01, 2004. Hardcover. Condition: New. Hardcover. Publisher overstock, may contain remainder mark on edge. Seller Inventory # 9780060843373B

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 5.99
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 6.00
From Canada to U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

2.

Jack, Albert
Published by Harper
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Your Online Bookstore
(Houston, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper. Hardcover. Condition: New. 0060843373 Ships promptly from Texas. Seller Inventory # Z0060843373ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 14.45
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

3.

Jack, Albert
Published by Harper
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 3
Seller:
Orion Tech
(Grand Prairie, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper. Hardcover. Condition: New. 0060843373 . Seller Inventory # Z0060843373ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 14.45
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

4.

Jack, Albert
Published by Harper
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: > 20
Seller:
Mediaoutlet12345
(Springfield, VA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper. Hardcover. Condition: New. 0060843373 *BRAND NEW* Ships Same Day or Next!. Seller Inventory # SWATI2132271083

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 10.47
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

5.

Jack, Albert
Published by Harper
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Gulf Coast Books
(Memphis, TN, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper. Hardcover. Condition: New. 0060843373 Ships from Tennessee, usually the same or next day. Seller Inventory # Z0060843373ZN

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 14.69
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

6.

Albert Jack
Published by Harper (2005)
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Ergodebooks
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper, 2005. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0060843373

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 11.93
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

7.

Albert Jack
Published by Harper (2005)
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Irish Booksellers
(Portland, ME, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper, 2005. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0060843373

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 17.62
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

8.

Albert Jack
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States (2006)
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Book Depository International
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2006. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Mad hatter . . . pie in the sky . . . egg on your face. We use these phrases every day, yet how many of us know what they really mean or where they came from? From bringing home the bacon to leaving no stone unturned, the English language is peppered with hundreds of common idioms borrowed from ancient traditions and civilizations throughout the world. In Red Herrings and White Elephants, Albert Jack has uncovered the amazing and sometimes downright bizarre stories behind many of our most familiar and eccentric modes of expression: If you happen to be a bootlegger, your profession recalls the Wild West outlaws who sold illegal alcohol by concealing slender bottles of whiskey in their boots. If you re on cloud nine, you owe a nod to the American Weather Bureau s classification of clouds, the ninth topping out all others at a mountainous 40,000 feet. If you opt for the hair of the dog the morning after, you re following the advice of medieval English doctors, who recommended rubbing the hair of a dog into the wound left by the animal s bite. A delightful compendium of anecdotes on everything from minding your p s and q s to pulling out all the stops, Red Herrings and White Elephants is an essential handbook for language-lovers of all ages. Seller Inventory # FLT9780060843373

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 18.18
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

9.

Albert Jack
Published by HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States (2006)
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2006. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Mad hatter . . . pie in the sky . . . egg on your face. We use these phrases every day, yet how many of us know what they really mean or where they came from? From bringing home the bacon to leaving no stone unturned, the English language is peppered with hundreds of common idioms borrowed from ancient traditions and civilizations throughout the world. In Red Herrings and White Elephants, Albert Jack has uncovered the amazing and sometimes downright bizarre stories behind many of our most familiar and eccentric modes of expression: If you happen to be a bootlegger, your profession recalls the Wild West outlaws who sold illegal alcohol by concealing slender bottles of whiskey in their boots. If you re on cloud nine, you owe a nod to the American Weather Bureau s classification of clouds, the ninth topping out all others at a mountainous 40,000 feet. If you opt for the hair of the dog the morning after, you re following the advice of medieval English doctors, who recommended rubbing the hair of a dog into the wound left by the animal s bite. A delightful compendium of anecdotes on everything from minding your p s and q s to pulling out all the stops, Red Herrings and White Elephants is an essential handbook for language-lovers of all ages. Seller Inventory # FLT9780060843373

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 18.43
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

10.

Jack, Albert
Published by Harper
ISBN 10: 0060843373 ISBN 13: 9780060843373
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
M and N Media
(Acworth, GA, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Harper. Hardcover. Condition: New. 0060843373 Please allow 4 - 14 business days for Standard shipping, within the US. Seller Inventory # XM-0060843373

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 19.79
Convert currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, rates & speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book