‘Miss’-‘Ms’: origin

‘miss’: unmarried woman or girl; 17th cent., short for ‘mistress’—‘Ms’: title free of reference to marital status; 20th cent., blend of ‘Mrs’ and ‘Miss’

Read More

‘to don’ – ‘to doff’

coalesced forms of the obsolete phrasal verbs ‘to do on’ and ‘to do off’, meaning respectively ‘to put on’ and ‘to take off’ (an item of clothing)

Read More

origin of ‘point-blank’

1571—probably from obsolete French ‘de pointe en blanc’, used of firing into empty space for the purpose of seeing how far a piece of artillery would carry

Read More

origin of ‘to leave in the lurch’

to desert someone in trouble—late 16th cent.—from French ‘lourche’, which denoted a game resembling backgammon and was used as an adjective meaning discomfited

Read More