One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The point at which many learners fail, especially a theory or formula that is difficult to grasp.
- ‘It is the pons asinorum of the relationship between economics and politics.’
- ‘After he had mastered the fifth proposition as easily as its predecessors, Frank told him that people generally found it difficult - it is the famous pons asinorum which puts a stop to many a budding geometrical career.’
- ‘We used to read the first book of Euclid as far as pons asinorum; but regularly as we reached the dreadful pass we were turned back for a revisal.’
Mid 18th century: Latin, literally ‘bridge of asses’, term taken from the fifth proposition of the first book of Euclid.
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