Bought a new book the other day from my favorite second-hand store. This one is call "An Apple a Day" and traces where some of our most common sayings originated. It's author is Caroline Taggart. Fascinating stuff, at least to me. Let me give you some examples.
1. A new broom sweeps clean. Interestingly enough, this dates back to 1546! And again in1616 there is a saying, "New brooms sweep clean, yet old friendship shall retain." Supposedly this evolved into the belief that on New Years Eve you should sweep your house to get rid of the old year's dirt and start the next day with a new broom.
2. Don't change horses in midstream. This one particularly caught my attention, since it's credited to Abraham Lincoln. In a speech in 1864, he advised against changing political sides, and recalled " an old Dutch farmer who remarked to a companion once it was best not to swap horses when crossing streams. I don't want to even think of all the implications of this saying in this particular political atmosphere.
3. Distance lends enchantment. From the Scottish poet, Thomas Campbell, in 1799, from his best selling "The Pleasures of Hope."
"Why do these cliffs of shadowy hope appear
More sweet than all the landscape smiling near?
'Tis distance lends enchantment to the view
And robes the mountain in its azure hue."
4. The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. From a poem by William Ross Wallace, a nineteenth century poet. Amazing isn't it, when one phrase is the main survivor out of a large body of work by an author.
They say that man is mighty,
He governs land and sea,
He wields a mighty sceptre
Over lesser powers that be;
But a mightier power and stronger
Man from his throne has hurled,
And the hand who rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.
This little book is fascinating, and I'm intrigued by lots more in it. If this kind of stuff appeals to you, let me know and I'll do more. I've got a whole book of the stuff. And do let me know if you have any questions about me or my books..I'd love to hear from you.
I'm at MuseItUp, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, all the usual places, and my website, www.jeanhartstewart.com.