‘Generals January and February’: meaning and origin

personify January and February as army commanders, especially in reference to winter as detrimental or destructive to a military campaign—apparently coined by Russian Prince Alexander Menshikov in 1855, during the Crimean War

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‘General Winter’: meaning and origin

personifies the winter season as an army commander, especially in reference to winter as detrimental or destructive to a military campaign—UK, 1777, in reference to the War of American Independence

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a British phrase: ‘to go like a bomb’

from the image of a speeding explosive projectile—primary meaning (of a motorcar, an aircraft, a motorcycle, an animal, a person): to move very fast—later (also ‘to go down like a bomb’ and ‘to go down a bomb’): to be very successful or popular

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‘Johnny Canuck’: meanings and origin

USA, 1858—a personification of the Canadian nation; Canadian people collectively; as a count noun: a Canadian—from ‘Canuck’, meaning Canadian—‘Johnny’ is used with modifying word to designate a person of the type, group, profession, etc., specified

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‘Barney’s bull’: meanings and early occurrences

Australia, 1834—used in various phrases, in particular as a type of someone or something in a very bad state or condition—also in the phrase ‘all behind like Barney’s bull’, meaning ‘very delayed’ or ‘backward’—origin unknown

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‘gyppy tummy’: meaning and origin

diarrhoea suffered by travellers, especially in Egypt—1915, British Army—the word ‘gyppy’ is from ‘gyp’ in ‘Egyptian’, and the suffix ‘-y’, used to form familiar diminutives

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‘Bugs Bunny’ (i.e., an eagle)

Australia, 1954—derogatory nickname for the metal eagle at the top of the Australian-American Memorial in Canberra—alludes to the fact that, from a distance, the eagle’s upswept wings look like a rabbit’s ears

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