origin of ‘paraphernalia’

from Medieval Latin ‘paraphernalia’, short for ‘paraphernalia bona’, ‘married woman’s property’, i.e. the goods which a bride brings over and above her dowry

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meaning and origin of ‘incunabula’

Latin ‘incunabula’: ‘swaddling clothes’, hence ‘beginning’—denotes the early printed books (from the 1450s to the end of the 15th century)

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the rough end of the pineapple

‘the rough end of the pineapple’: harsh or unfair treatment—said to be an Australian phrase, but may have originated in the USA in the mid-20th century

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the colonial origin of ‘kidnap’

original meaning of ‘kidnap’, late 17th century—to steal or carry off children or others in order to provide servants or labourers for the American plantations

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origin of ‘up the river’ (to prison)

US, 19th cent.—‘to send up the river’ (to send to prison)—originally referred to Sing Sing prison, situated up the Hudson River from the city of New York

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