‘scarlet letter’: meanings and origin

a representation of the letter A in scarlet cloth which Hester Prynne is condemned to wear in The Scarlet Letter (1850), by Nathaniel Hawthorne—soon came to be used figuratively in the sense of a stigma, a mark of infamy

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‘Nacht und Nebel’: meanings and origin

the name of a decree issued in Nazi Germany in December 1941, under which individuals suspected of resistance or other underground activities were arrested and deported suddenly and without trace, frequently during the night—by extension: any situation, event, etc., characterised by mystery, obscurity or secrecy

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notes on ‘slobber-knocker’ and ‘slobber-knock’

USA—‘slobberknocker’ (1967): an American-Football player with a particularly aggressive style of play—from ‘slobber-knock’ (1964): of an American-Football player, to hit with extreme force—the image is of knocking the slobber out of somebody

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‘Energizer bunny’: meaning and origin

USA, 1990—a persistent or indefatigable person or phenomenon—refers to ‘Energizer Bunny’, the name of a battery-operated toy rabbit represented as never running out of energy, featured from 1988 in a television advertising campaign for batteries

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