Word origins

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Was the first computer ‘bug’ a real insect?

The phrase 'computer bug' has been around for a long time, but was it created due to an incident involving a real insect? Click through to find out.

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What is the origin of the phrase 'dressed to the nines'?

To be ‘dressed to the nines’ means to be dressed very smartly – but what is the origin of this phrase, and why is it ‘nines’ rather than ‘eights’ or ‘tens’?

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What is the origin of the phrase ‘hair of the dog’?

Most people have known somebody in need of the hair of the dog, but where did the phrase come from? Our short video explains everything.

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What is the origin of the phrase ‘sleep tight’?

There are lots of parents out there that have said "sleep tight" when they put their kids to bed. But have you ever wondered where the phrase came from?

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What is the origin of the phrase 'the bee's knees'?

The bee's knees is usually said to describe something of outstanding performance, but have you ever thought where it came from? Our page has the answers.

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What is the origin of the term 'brass monkey'?

In some English-speaking parts of the world, the phrase 'brass monkey' is used to describe cold weather, but where did it come from? Our video has the answer.

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What is the origin of the term ‘flea market’?

Most people will go to a flea market at some point in their lives, but where did the phrase come from? Watch our video to find out the answer.

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What is the origin of the term ‘pros and cons’?

What is the origin of the term ‘pros and cons’? You may use this phrase often, but without realizing that you’re actually abbreviating Latin…

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What is the origin of the term ‘UFO’?

There are many theories about the existence of UFOs, but where did this initialism come from? Watch our video to find out the real truth.

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What is the origin of the word ‘berserk’?

Where does the word ‘berserk’ come from, and what has it got to do with bears? We’ve got the unexpected answers, so you can stop going berserk!