279. Indian Mutiny, the Cat-O’-Nine-Tails, and Mercury Poisoning: The Surprising Origins of English Idioms! (English Vocabulary Lesson)

Thinking in English

15-01-2024 • 19 min

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What do the 1857 Indian Mutiny, a brutal punishment feared by sailors, and mercury poisoning all have in common? All of these things lie behind three common idioms.

Today, let’s take a deeper look at these idioms while exploring their surprising etymologies!

Transcript - https://thinkinginenglish.blog/2024/01/15/279-indian-mutiny-the-cat-o-nine-tails-and-mercury-poisoning-the-surprising-origins-of-english-idioms-english-vocabulary-lesson/

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  • Bite the Bullet (idiom): To endure a painful or difficult situation with courage and fortitude, often accepting the inevitable.
  • Cat Got Your Tongue (idiom): A phrase used to inquire why someone is unusually quiet or not speaking.
  • Mad as a Hatter (idiom): Completely crazy or insane, often used to describe someone with eccentric behavior.
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