Opening Pandora's Box
Phrases Borrowed from the Classics and the Stories behind Them
We might know what it means to be 'under the aegis', but what was the aegis? In this A–Z of classical allusion, Ferdie Addis has gathered together words and phrases, such as chimera, Croesus, hoi polloi and lotus eaters, that so enrich modern English, and he tells of their weird and wonderful origins in ancient history and Greek and Roman mythology.
The Usual Suspects
and Other Cliches
Cliches: over-used, abused, and often derided at by school teachers – or are they valuable linguistic shorthand, summing up in a few words what otherwise would take twenty? In this A–Z, lexicographer Betty Kirkpatrick explains the stories behind and the usage of more than 1,500 phrases, old and new, from what is 'essentially a lawless part of the English language'. First published as The Dictionary of Cliches in 1996. Second edition.