Who devised ‘Rule of Thumb’?

| Linda Brown | Word & Idioms

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This one ladies, feminists, and decent human beings – you are not going to like. This idiom is commonly thought to be derived from a law that limited the maximum thickness of a stick with which it was permissible for a man to beat his wife under English Common law.

Common law permitted a man to give his wife ‘moderate correction’ and ׳Rule of thumb׳ was apparently an unwritten law.

Bonus fact: Idioms and expressions grow in a cultural context and environmental background and sometimes continue to exist even after that background disappears. A contemporary example of this is the phrase ‘the penny has dropped’, which originated from a time when public telephone activation was done by a token, a period that ended in the late 20th century.

Some expression consists of a reference to a particular country or city, which is attributed to a particular attribute. Examples:

In English, we say: ‘It’s all Greek to me’, a phrase that says to mean no sense at all. A similar phrase appears in different languages, but in each country the ‘misunderstood’ language that is used as a metaphor is different. In French, for example, is C’est de l’hébreu, which means ‘this is Hebrew’.

The same goes for food. For example, Turkish coffee is called in Greece ‘Greek coffee, And what is known in most countries as American bagel referred to by Americans as Jewish bagel.

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And for those of you who are idioms-enthusiats, here is some more:

Idioms and expressions grow in a cultural context and environmental background and sometimes continue to exist even after that background disappears. A contemporary example of this is the phrase ‘the penny has dropped’, which originated from a time when public telephone activation was done by a token, a period that ended in the late 20th century.

Some expression consists of a reference to a particular country or city, which is attributed to a particular attribute. Examples:

In English, we say: ‘Its all greek to me’, a phrase that says to mean no sense at all. A similar phrase appears in different languages, but in each country the ‘misunderstood’ language that is used as a metaphor is different. In French, for example, is C’est de l’hébreu, which means ‘this is Hebrew’.

Another example is ‘the American Dream’ is a concept that describes a life of wealth, success, and satisfaction that is supposedly within the reach of US residents. The American Dream calls the image of the United States as “the land of unlimited possibilities.”

Many food types are given a nickname that attributes them to a particular country. For example Turkish coffee (which is called in Greece ‘Greek coffee), American bagel (which Americans call Jewish bagel), Bulgarian cheese, Iraqi pita, and many others.

And for those of you who are idioms-enthusiats, here is some more:

Idioms and expressions grow in a cultural context and environmental background and sometimes continue to exist even after that background disappears. A contemporary example of this is the phrase ‘the penny has dropped’, which originated from a time when public telephone activation was done by a token, a period that ended in the late 20th century.

Some expression consists of a reference to a particular country or city, which is attributed to a particular attribute. Examples:

In English, we say: ‘Its all greek to me’, a phrase that says to mean no sense at all. A similar phrase appears in different languages, but in each country the ‘misunderstood’ language that is used as a metaphor is different. In French, for example, is C’est de l’hébreu, which means ‘this is Hebrew’.

Another example is ‘the American Dream’ is a concept that describes a life of wealth, success, and satisfaction that is supposedly within the reach of US residents. The American Dream calls the image of the United States as “the land of unlimited possibilities.”

Many food types are given a nickname that attributes them to a particular country. For example Turkish coffee (which is called in Greece ‘Greek coffee), American bagel (which Americans call Jewish bagel), Bulgarian cheese, Iraqi pita, and many others.