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Scapegoats, Shambles and Shibboleths: The Queen's English from the King James Bible
     

Scapegoats, Shambles and Shibboleths: The Queen's English from the King James Bible

by Martin Manser
 

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"In the twinkling of an eye," this book explains that many familiar phrases are taken straight from the King James Version of the Bible
 
The fruit of Martin Manser's labors is a delightful book for all who adore the English language. Far from always quoting the Bible to seem holier than thou, it seems many

Overview

"In the twinkling of an eye," this book explains that many familiar phrases are taken straight from the King James Version of the Bible
 
The fruit of Martin Manser's labors is a delightful book for all who adore the English language. Far from always quoting the Bible to seem holier than thou, it seems many people quote the book without even realizing it. Manser explains in detail such commonly used phrases as "a fly in the ointment," "eat drink and be merry for tomorrow we die," "at death's door," and "the apple of one's eye"—in the past the pupil of the eye, because of its shape, was referred to as "the apple." Recognized to be the most important part of the eye, it was a symbol for all things precious—the most valuable part of a highly valued organ of the body. Dotted around the Bible the phrase therefore represents anything that is of great worth, whether it is the law of God in Proverbs 7 v 2, the people of Israel found and nurtured in the desert, or an individual on the receiving end of divine care. A perfectly quirky present for language lovers, this book will amuse and entertain as well as shed a thought-provoking light on the background to our rich and varied language.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"If you're at all interested in the origins of our extraordinary language then this entertaining and delightful companion will reward your interest over and over again."  —Good Book Guide

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780340979792
Publisher:
Hodder & Stoughton, Ltd.
Publication date:
09/01/2009
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author


Martin Manser is a professional reference-book editor and a language consultant. He is the author or editor of Illustrated Family Bible Stories, Pocket Oxford Chinese Dictionary, and The Ultimate Bible Fact & Quiz Book.

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