origin of ‘old chestnut’ and of French ‘marronnier’

The term old chestnut denotes a joke, story or subject that has become tedious and uninteresting through constant repetition. Here, the adjective old is simply an intensifier of the noun. The figurative use of chestnut originated in American-English theatrical slang. Diary of a Daly Débutante: being passages from the journal of a member of Augustin Daly’s […]

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