5 Idioms with Unexpected Origins

Clichés may be an undesirable ingredient for your prose (in fact, AutoCrit even has a report dedicated to that specific curse), but there’s no denying that, used sparingly, idioms can make for a fun way to color characters.

Every language and culture on Earth has its own set of idioms. Some are shared across entire populations, while others live on at smaller regional or community levels. They can be pretty fun to play with – offering the reader some shared amusement or surprise as characters react to the sayings and proverbs of others.

Dutch idioms, for example, are often hilarious-sounding to the ears of native English speakers. Translated, ‘Wie boter op zijn hoofd heeft, moet uit de zon blijven’ means ‘He who has butter on this head should stay out of the sun.’ It’s the equivalent of ‘People in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones,’ but the imagery is much higher on the hilarity scale. See More . . .






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