One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A tailless amphibian with a short squat body, moist smooth skin, and very long hind legs for leaping.
- ‘Reilly will compare the population status and dynamics of the European common frog in the three different types of peat bogs found in Ireland.’
- ‘A frog leaps off the bank into a shallow pond just as a hummingbird pauses for nectar from a flaming red salvia plant.’
- ‘These amphibians, like modern frogs and salamanders, hatched from eggs and spent their larval period in the water as tadpoles.’
- ‘Dr Harnett said pond insects and water plants were already thriving, and some visitors had seen newts and frogs.’
- ‘Ice crystals start forming on the frog's skin and quickly work their way inside.’
- ‘Scientists now suggest that the diet of Colombian poison-dart frogs, shown above, causes their skin to be toxic.’
- ‘Around 5,000 amphibian species, including frogs, toads, newts, and salamanders are thought to exist today.’
- ‘Some amphibians we know today include frogs, toads, newts and salamanders.’
- ‘The salmon had also been observed feeding on frogs and newts.’
- ‘Bullfrogs, unlike native frogs, are unpalatable to the non-native fishes.’
- ‘The European common frog has a small, squat body and a wide, flat head.’
- ‘The reason for avoiding consumption of the rest of the body is unclear, but may be related to poisonous excretions from the skin of frogs.’
- ‘Amphibians, such as frogs and toads, can also carry salmonella.’
- ‘The recent warm but wet weather has caused a mass migration of frogs, newts and toads to the Barnes Wetland Centre.’
- ‘The new pond has been created to encourage frogs, newts, toads, dragonflies and butterflies.’
- ‘From every direction frogs leaped, skidded, and dived toward the safety of deeper water.’
- ‘Water provides a breeding place for frogs, toads, newts and dragonflies.’
- ‘A similar story can be told for several other species of toads, frogs, salamanders, alligators, and turtles around the world.’
- ‘Scientists suspect that frogs use skin poisons as a defense against predators and microbes.’
- ‘They had everything from frogs to boa constrictors.’
2derogatory, informal A French person.
Hunt for or catch frogs.
have a frog in one's throat
informal Lose one's voice or find it hard to speak because of hoarseness.
- ‘It sounded as though she had a frog in her throat.’
- ‘And so, this morning I awoke not knowing that I had a frog in my throat.’
- ‘Mahinda is waiting for the auspicious time to speak about his vision, not that he has a frog in his throat.’
- ‘I have always had a frog in my throat but now I have a feeling like something is stuck in my throat.’
- ‘He writes in his diary that ‘I've lost my voice and have a frog in my throat.’’
- ‘After that, I had a frog in my throat.’
- ‘Unfortunatley, she had a frog in her throat and couldn't hit the last note in Portland Oregon and chose not to do How Great Thou Art during her gospel medley, but that was okay.’
- ‘Gene is caught sucking on a lemon because he has a frog in his throat.’
- ‘When I left Freetown on the helicopter on the first leg of my trip home I had a frog in my throat.’
- ‘I remember asking her what was wrong with her voice, and hearing her say that she had a frog in her throat because she was sad.’
Old English frogga, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch vors and German Frosch. Used as a general term of abuse in Middle English, the term was applied specifically to the Dutch in the 17th century; its application to the French (late 18th century) is partly alliterative, partly from the reputation of the French for eating frogs' legs.
1An ornamental coat fastener or braid consisting of a spindle-shaped button and a loop through which it passes.
- ‘The costume was a very nice military top, green material with a frog or braid across the front, black wool tights with a red decoration on the side, and nice character shoes.’
- ‘It was held closed by four large, golden frogs, down the front of the robe.’
- ‘I know the braided loop on a traditional Asian costume is a frog.’
- ‘I wasn't exotic and I never thought about wearing a little black linen pants and a shirt that closed with frogs instead of buttons.’
- 1.1historical An attachment to a belt for holding a sword, bayonet, or similar weapon.
2A perforated or spiked device for holding the stems of flowers in an arrangement.
- ‘Fill the cups with well-soaked floral foam or use a small metal florist's frog, if necessary, to hold the flowers in place.’
3The piece into which the hair is fitted at the lower end of the bow of a stringed instrument.
- ‘Franchomme had a Stradivari cello but held the bow above the frog, making for flexibility and subtlety of tone rather than robustness.’
- ‘In Renaissance Europe the stick became straighter, and a wooden frog was wedged between stick and hair to hold them apart at the heel.’
4A grooved metal plate for guiding the wheels of a railroad vehicle at an intersection.
- ‘If you stand close by the crossing, you can feel the ground shake as the wheels bang over the frogs.’
Early 18th century: perhaps a use of frog, influenced by synonymous Italian forchetta or French fourchette ‘small fork’, because of the shape.
1An elastic horny pad growing in the sole of a horse's hoof, helping to absorb the shock when the hoof hits the ground.
- ‘‘The horse scraped the frog of his left hoof in the backstretch and lost his drive,’ Nakatani said.’
- ‘Duckett feels that there should be shortening of the distance from the point of the frog to the toe.’
- ‘The ground surface of the foot, that is the sole, bars and frog, are not touched.’
- ‘Moreover, it is felt by many that by leaving the frog intact, the proper width between the heels will be maintained.’
- ‘‘She has flat feet and her frogs have gotten beat up in the past, but her feet have been good lately,’ Hills said.’
- ‘Had a fang hit the hoof's frog instead of the hoof, it might have been another story.’
- 1.1 A raised or swollen area on a surface.
Early 17th century: perhaps from frog; perhaps also influenced by Italian forchetta or French fourchette (see frog).
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