The Origins of Common Catchphrases

Tom Blank of Weird History recounts the long history of some of the most common catchphrases and idioms used in the English language, focusing on their real-life origins and subsequent evolution into the modern lexicon. Examples include “basket case”, “moron”, “run amok”, “peanut gallery”, “rule of thumb”, “Paddy Wagon”, and more.

Language is constantly changing, and many of the common terms and phrases we use in everyday conversation have much deeper meanings than we realize. Numerous statements still in use have evoked controversy and reassessment, while others continue to find new applications.

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