Jedburgh Justice and Kentish Fire: The Origins of English in Ten Phrases and Expressions

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Little, Brown Book Group, Oct 16, 2014 - Humor - 304 pages

Did you know that Jedburgh Justice is ‘executing someone first, then giving them a trial’? Or that Kentish Fire is ‘applauding sarcastically to silence your opponents’?

From the author of Haggard Hawks and Paltry Poltroons, this is a fascinating collection of curious phrases and expressions from the English language, together with the stories of their etymology and anecdotes about their use in history. Where Haggard Hawks focused on lists of ten words of a particular kind, this collection instead focuses on lists phrases and expressions, also arranged by their quirky and specific origins.

The contents will include:

10 PHRASES DERIVED FROM PLACES IN BRITAIN (Jedburgh justice, Kentish fire, Scarborough warning...)
10 PHRASES DERIVED FROM PLACES IN LONDON (A draught on the pump at Aldgate, Kent Street ejectment...)
10 PHRASES DERIVED FROM PLACES IN AMERICA (Hollywood yes, Michigan bankroll, Chicago
10 LATIN PHRASES USED IN ENGLISH (Quid pro quo, nunc est bibendum...)
10 FRENCH PHRASES USED IN ENGLISH (La vie en rose, C’est la guerre, Revenons nos moutons...)
10 SHAKESPEAREAN EXPRESSIONS (Gild the lily, Salad days, All that glitters is not gold...)
10 LITERARY EXPRESSIONS (A thing of beauty is a joy forever, Abandon hope all ye who enter here...)
10 PHRASES FROM COMICS & CARTOONS (Keep up with the Joneses, Mutt and Jeff...)
10 PHRASES FROM SONGS (Miss Otis regrets, The birds and the bees, Potato po-tah-to...)
10 WAYS OF SAYING ‘WOW’ (Great Scott, My stars, Mamma mia...)

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About the author (2014)

Paul Jones is the author of Haggard Hawks and Paltry Poltroons, previously published by Constable, as well as The British Isles: A Trivia Gazetteer, a book on the origins of British place names. He is a journalist, magazine publisher and is currently studying at the Royal School of Music.

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