Take a Word.... CAT: Etymology, History, Sayings & a Short Story

Look what the Cat Dragged In!

Mine, all mine!
Mine, all mine! | Source

Why 'cat'?

Well, I explored phrases using ‘dog’ so I can hardly ignore the noble ‘cat’ can I? The cat is well-loved the world over but has some bad press when it comes to being used in idioms.

Cats are independent, they choose their owners rather than the other way round and they have characteristics which no other animal seems to possess.


Spooky

I once entered a stranger's house to view an item we were going to purchase. I had a spooky feeling that I was being watched but could see no-one when I looked around the room. On looking more closely, I spied a cat which blended in perfectly with the cream leather furniture as it sat, like a china figurine, atop one of the chairs. It was a Siamese and if looks could kill, I’d be six feet under. That was not a cat which welcomed strangers; I was glad to leave and felt the curse of the mummies upon me!

That said, my girls had a cat when they were little; she was a lovely tortoiseshell so I know they can be affectionate. She did have a tendency to bring mice as presents though!


How do I get out of here?
How do I get out of here? | Source

What 'cat' sayings do you know?

In the vein of these articles, stretch out your paws and hunt for phrases to make the whiskers tingle, to make the eyes glow in the dark, to create an atmosphere of silent velvet on sharp stone. Draw on the myriad of sayings at your disposal or, better still, make up your own!


Ginger Tom

Who me?
Who me? | Source

Etymology

From Middle English cat, catte, from Old English catt (“male cat”) and catte (“female cat”), from Late Latin cattus (“domestic cat”), from Latin catta

Various languages have a similar word: e.g. French ‘chat’ (male cat), ‘chatte’ (female) and ‘chatton’ (kitten).

Now let's look at a few idioms and the like, in the following short story.


Playing Cat and Mouse

Slimy Sid thought he was the cat’s whiskers. His smooth gait oozed arrogance and his smile slithered into people’s heads, leaving a slimy discomfort.

He was propping up the bar in the ‘Cat and Fiddle’ down the High Street. An overweight, wheezing man pushed his way from the door through the melée and hoisted his bulk onto a bar stool.

“Oh, look what the cat dragged in!’ Sid sneered.

The larger man looked daggers at him and ordered a beer with a whisky chaser. Sid had his own weapon ready,

“I’m still waiting for that information, Brady. You know who nicked that crack from my van.”

Brady’s silence annoyed him and his veneer slipped a little.

“Cat got your tongue, you slob?” Sid’s spit-slavered lips were inches from Brady’s nose. Think you can dodge your way out of this one? Think again. I’ll give you ’til 6 tonight.”


Familiar?  Me?
Familiar? Me? | Source
Well, I do my best.
Well, I do my best. | Source

Slick Sally

Sid, re-cloaked in his smug smile, knocked back his own drink and slithered out onto the street. Composure deserted him again when he almost fell over the pub’s black cat which darted into the building with the ease its nine lives afforded him. Local kids reckoned the cat was the familiar of Slick Sally, whom they were convinced was the neighbourhood witch; her daytime job was postmistress.

Sally was watching, slit-eyed like that cat of hers. That night, as Sid ducked the rain on the way to his van, crossing the road at a lick, he slipped on one of the shimmering cats’ eyes. Sally happened to be passing. She seemed to glide up to him,

“Can I help you?” Her voice miaowed at him.

“B… off! Nosey, catty old witch. You know what they say, don’t you? Curiosity killed the cat!”

“Just thought you might be hurt. I’ll leave you alone. This might soothe your leg if you care to try it.” She dropped a pack of white powder into his hand.


Brady Strikes Back

Even in the shabby shadows, he looked like the cat who got the cream. The Cheshire Cat grin revealed shining teeth, teeth which he smeared with the white powder. He’d got it back; somehow she’d found it or maybe she’d stolen it in the first place? He’d make her pay and next time he saw that black cat of hers he’d kick it to kingdom come, that’d stop it caterwauling all night when he was trying to sleep.

Brady appeared, a ghost from the bricks, voice shattering the night air.

“Think you’re clever, do you, Slimy Sid! Think you can bully us? Well, I’ve got news for you.” His own caterwauling had drawn attention from a few occupants whose curtains were twitching.

“Want to know what happened to that stuff of yours, you stupid slime-ball? I’ll tell you, and this'll set the cat among the pigeons. It’s at the police station, along with a statement from me and from that kid who calls himself a dealer. Thought I was on your side, did ‘ya? Look at my badge and weep!”


Sally's final Stroke

Sid was hopping up and down like a cat on a hot tin roof. Something was not right. His mouth had started to burn, his stomach was churning and his legs wouldn’t obey his befuddled brain.

Slowly, Slimy Sid sank to the slippery surface beneath him. Slick Sally reappeared, looking down at him with disdain,

“That’ll teach you to entertain thoughts of kicking my cat! Sour milk for you with a dose of prison thrown in. If you’re lucky I’ll find the antidote to that by morning.”

....................................................................................................................................

Derivations and superstitions are many. We'll look at just a few.



Cheshire Cat Grin

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Disappearing bit by bit (Mabel Lucie Attwell), story by Lewis CarrollHead and Grin (Mabel Lucie Attwell)'Off with his head!" (Mabel Lucie Attwell)My cherished copy of 'Alice in Wonderland' by Lewis Carroll
Disappearing bit by bit (Mabel Lucie Attwell), story by Lewis Carroll
Disappearing bit by bit (Mabel Lucie Attwell), story by Lewis Carroll | Source
Head and Grin (Mabel Lucie Attwell)
Head and Grin (Mabel Lucie Attwell) | Source
'Off with his head!" (Mabel Lucie Attwell)
'Off with his head!" (Mabel Lucie Attwell) | Source
My cherished copy of 'Alice in Wonderland' by Lewis Carroll
My cherished copy of 'Alice in Wonderland' by Lewis Carroll | Source

The Cheshire Cat

To grin like a Cheshire Cat is said to come from ‘Alice in Wonderland’ by Lewis Carroll. However, the origin favoured by the people of Cheshire (a county of England), where there are many dairy farms, is that, because the cats there have plenty of milk and cream to drink, they tend to grin!

Another possible origin is that a cheese once sold in Cheshire was moulded like a cat grinning. The cheese was cut from the tail end, so that the last part to be eaten was the head of the smiling cat; hence the fact that Carroll’s cat disappeared little by little before only the grin remained.

Yet another explanation is that carvings were made, on churches and the like, of cats, or carvings which might have been lions. These carvings could have eroded or been inexpertly carved, so assumed a face which looked as though it was grinning.


A Nautical Feel

A cat-o’nine-tails was used for punishment, by way of flogging. It had nine ropes plaited from cat-gut or later other materials, which were bound to a handle, held by the administrator of the ordeal and applied liberally.


Carbonel the Black Cat

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Carbonel with Rosemary on the Broomstick - he's in charge!Rosemary using the Witch's Hat
Carbonel with Rosemary on the Broomstick - he's in charge!
Carbonel with Rosemary on the Broomstick - he's in charge! | Source
Rosemary using the Witch's Hat
Rosemary using the Witch's Hat | Source

Luck & Superstition

All cats, whatever their breed or colour, were revered in Ancient Egypt from around 3000 BC and protected by law. The cat became sacred.

More common, however, is the belief that bad luck will befall you should a black cat cross your path.

A common animal for a witch’s ‘familiar’ is a black cat, to aid in her spell-making and to ride pillion on the broom-stick. If any of you have read the charming children’s story of ‘Carbonel’ by Barbara Sleigh, you will know all about this!

An Irish superstition states that a black cat crossing one's path by moonlight means death in an epidemic (shortens the odds rather).

English schoolchildren believed seeing a white cat on the way to school is sure to bring trouble. To avert bad luck, they would either spit, or turn around completely and make the sign of the cross. I'd lay odds on them spitting!

Another English superstition states that if a cat washes behind its ears, rain is coming. Yet another says that a cat sleeping with all four paws tucked under it means cold weather ahead. Wet and cold - well, well, what a surprise!


Middle Ages

A dislike of cats grew in Europe in the Middle Ages, particularly in England. A cat is characteristically independent, wilful and stealthy and at that time they multiplied in the cities and became a nuisance; they were known as alley cats.

They were often fed by poor, lonely old ladies and when witch hysteria struck Europe many of these women were accused of practicing black magic. Their cat companions, especially black ones, were therefore also deemed guilty of witchery.

Many societies in the late Middle Ages attempted to drive cats into extinction. As the witch scare mounted to paranoia, a large number of innocent women and their harmless pets were burned at the stake.


Salem Witch Hunts

The notion of witches transforming themselves into black cats in order to prowl streets unobserved became a central belief in America during the Salem witch hunts. An animal once loved had become a creature which was dreaded and despised.

In fact black cats were slaughtered throughout Europe, to the extent that you might wonder how the gene for the colour black was not eradicated - but then we all know a cat has nine lives.


Good & Bad Luck, in Britain....

Many people believe that a black cat brings good fortune and also, that anyone who finds the one perfect, pure white hair in an all-black cat and plucks it out without being scratched, will find great wealth and good luck in love.

In Britain, on the Yorkshire coast, wives of fishermen believe that their menfolk will return safely if a black cat is kept in the house.

A black cat in the audience on the opening night of a show means the play will be successful. In fact, a cat is often kept as a lucky mascot in the theatre and disaster strikes any actor who dares to kick it.

Black cats were once treated like royalty in the homes of English sailors, who believed that keeping them happy would ensure fair weather when they went to sea. They became so expensive that few sailors could afford them!

An old English proverb states,

”Whenever the cat of the house is black,
The lasses of lovers will have no lack.”

In the English Midlands, a black cat as a wedding present is thought to bring good luck to the bride.


.... in Europe....

In the south of France, black cats are referred to as "matagots" or "magician cats." Local superstition says they bring good luck to owners who feed them well and treat them with the respect they deserve.

In Normandy, seeing a tortoiseshell cat foretells death by accident.

Some Italians might believe that a cat sneezing is a good omen for everyone who hears it but a Frenchman wouldn’t want to court back luck by carrying a cat whilst crossing a stream.

It is said that in the southern regions of France, if a young unmarried girl accidentally steps on a cat's tail, she will have to wait twelve months before she finds a husband.

A Celtic belief was that kittens born in May were badly behaved and troublesome. In Celtic mythology, the month of May was a time of ill-omen.

When cats rush about wildly, clawing at curtains and cushions, it means that wind is coming.


....and All over the World

Throughout the world it is considered to be bad luck to mistreat a cat. This worldwide respect for the cat is probably rooted in those ancient religions in which the cat was a sacred animal and where those who harmed it would suffer the consequences.

Never kick a cat or you will get rheumatism; never drown one or the devil will get you.

In what was known as Bohemia, in western Czechoslovakia, the cat was a symbol of fertility and one buried in a field of grain would guarantee a good harvest.

The Japanese prefer their own native short-tailed cat - the Japanese Bobtail - because they are less likely to bewitch humans. Japanese sailors take tricoloured or me'kay cats on their ships to bring them good luck. The figure of a cat with its left paw raised is commonly seen in gift shops in Japan, where they are sold as souvenirs. It is believed that the beckoning cat brings good fortune to its owner.

An American hill country superstition says that a cat can decide whether or not a girl should get married. The debating bride-to-be takes three hairs from the cat's tail and wraps them in paper, which she then places under her door step. If in the morning, the cat hairs are arranged in a Y pattern, the answer is Yes, if the hairs form the letter N, the answer is… you’ve guessed it…. No!

Also in America, black and white, as well as grey, cats are considered to be lucky.

Indonesians and Malays believe that if you wash your cat it will bring rain.


Ship's Cat

Atlantic Conference 1941: Churchill & 'Blackie' the cat, mascot of HMS Prince of Wales
Atlantic Conference 1941: Churchill & 'Blackie' the cat, mascot of HMS Prince of Wales | Source

General

Sailors believe that if a ship's cat miaows and appears to be cross, they will face a hard voyage but if it is bright and lively, there will be a brisk following wind. It used to be said that a contrary wind at sea could be raised by shutting a cat in a canister. Throwing a cat overboard resulted in an immediate storm, though no sailor would dream of doing this as it was considered good luck to have a cat on board.

Occult powers are often attributed to cats. It is said that they also have the power of hypnotism (I think that Siamese cat was trying out something on me!).

A cat with three different hues in its coat protects one against fire and fever.

It is said that to dream of cats is unfavourable as this denotes treachery.

In Tasseography (fortune-telling by tea leaves) a cat signifies false friends and deceit, someone lying in ambush.

If the household cat sneezes near the bride on her wedding morning, the marriage will be a happy one.

When a cat washes its face in the parlour, company can be expected, and when it’s looking out of the window it’s looking for rain.

Should you hear a cat crying before setting off on a journey, you must return and find out what it wants.

No cat which has been bought will ever be any good at catching mice.

When cats sit with their back to the fire, look out for frost or a storm.


Miscellaneous

“She’s catty.” This is a colloquial description of a female who has a sharp tongue and is apparently spiteful, sarcastic or bitchy.

Someone who acts like ‘a cat on a hot tin roof’ is fidgety, nervous, pacing the floor, can’t keep his feet still. The analogy is a cat on a sun-baked roof, running, making sure its paws don’t touch the tiles for too long so they aren’t burnt.

Cats seem to spend a lot of time on the roof! If you’ve had a ‘night on the tiles’, you’ve been out all night, celebrating or just partying and drinking. Cats out at night often wail at each other from one rooftop to another, also resulting in the term ‘caterwauling’, making loud noises like a cat.

Cat-calling is a shrill yell or whistle to denote dislike or, if it's aimed at women, to cause embarrassment. It was originally used to express disapproval at the theatre.

Another night-time occupation is that of ‘cat burglar’. He needs to be stealthy, to creep around, velvet pawed like a cat.

When you go on holiday you might send your cat to a cattery for its own holiday, whether it wants one or not.

A catfish is an ugly specimen which has long whiskers.

Playing cat and mouse is teasing someone, letting them go, drawing them back, like a cat playing with a mouse, often with the final intention of making them feel bad, not like a cat who finally maims or kills, though the person concerned can be hurt emotionally.

‘Cat’ is the shortened version for machines such as those with caterpillar tracks or a catamaran.

The Manx cat (from the Isle of Man) has no tail or, at the very most, a stubby one.

Raining cats and dogs! - (thanks, Lori) pelting down with rain!


Be Brave!

Made up any of your own ‘cat’ phrases yet? Think of a cat’s looks, its characteristics, its variety of colours. Remember, the phrases don’t have to describe actual cats, just suggest the likeness. Here are a few to get you going:

tortoiseshell shadows spat flashes of gold,

black velvet gloved sharpened claws,

kitten eyes lured him to the poisoned cream.

Leave your own phrases in the comments or you might wish to keep them to yourselves for future use! Happy word play!


Manx Moggies

Have you ever seen a Manx cat?

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Comments 38 comments

annart profile image

annart 15 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks, Flourish, for reading and contributing your valuable input.

I think cats choose upon whom they wish to bestow their bounty! Such strange creatures, full of character. Glad you had some 'good boys'.

There are three cats on the campsite here in Brittany; one is a sort of tabby called 'Kiki', the youngest and very friendly. The middle one is a dark tabby and a bit aloof unless he wants a tummy rub, then he's anybody's! The third is an old tortoiseshell, fat, nervous and avoids all humans, even its owners; she's called 'Pom Pom' (very furry). Yesterday, Kiki and Pom Pom were arguing over a vole one of them had caught. Not the best asset of a cat, unless you want to rid your farm of pesty rats of course. They are part of the family here and part of the scenery.

Good to see you!

Ann


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 15 months ago from USA

Cats have always brought me the best of luck, whatever their color. I especially love that proverb about black cats. They get such a bum rap. Up until last year I had three black cats (and others), but they were elderly and sadly passed away within months of one another due to diabetes and other advanced illnesses. They were all good boys.


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks, Alicia, for reading and for your kind comments, especially regarding the series. I appreciate your encouragement.

Ann


AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 16 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

I love all the references to cats in this hub! You're creating a very interesting series of hubs, Ann. I'll make sure that I read the ones that I've missed. The series is very enjoyable as well as informative.


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thank you, ps. So glad you liked this. Yes, I remember you talking about your cats in several hubs. Pets are wonderful creatures, all with their own wonderful characters.

Thanks for your support; always good to hear from you.

Ann


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks again, Jo! Glad you liked this. Cats are intriguing but I must admit I find dogs more affectionate and more loyal.

Lovely to hear from you and I appreciate your support, ((((J0))))

Ann


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 16 months ago from sunny Florida

Awesome, awesome, Ann. So much mystery and superstition (if you will) surrounds our lovely felines. Some of this I had read or been told but much I had not. It was informative and fun to read.

If you have read about my kitties you know I have one inside kitty and two outside ones...so I am a fan!!! Your kitties are adorable!!!

Well done...once again Angels are on the way to you ps Voted up++++


Jo_Goldsmith11 profile image

Jo_Goldsmith11 16 months ago

Well isn't this one the " cats meow". :-) Sorry, couldn't help myself! :-)

So glad you are continuing this. I really learned a lot. And..I still don't like black cats! eeek

The orange and white one looks like one of our 4 orange and white cats, when it was just still a baby. sooo cute!

Up, shared and on my way over to read about dogs.

Hugs! (((((((((((( Ann ))))))))))))


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks, Frank, for a great comment and for the vote. I like 'crazy'!

Glad you enjoyed this.

Ann


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 16 months ago from Shelton

crazy exciting and informative.. love the series.. and Love how your hub entertains voted awesome.....:)


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Venkatachari M: Thank you for your kind words and for the votes; glad you enjoyed this too.

Ann


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Hi Dora! Yes, there is so much connected with cats. Hadn't heard of the 'lingual toilet' though! Glad you like this and I appreciate your support.

Lovely to see you here today.

Ann


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

m abdullah javed: thank you so much for your kind words and votes. I'm glad you're enjoying this series. There are a few more in the pipeline.

Ann


Venkatachari M profile image

Venkatachari M 16 months ago from Hyderabad, India

What an awesome post taking the word of "Cat"!!! There is much of interesting cat knowledge and cat facts. And the story also. I appreciate you, Ann, for all this wonderful entertainment and information.

Voted up, awesome and interesting.


MsDora profile image

MsDora 16 months ago from The Caribbean

I find all the superstitions associated with cats very interesting. Thanks doing such a detailed research and presentation. I love cats, though I do not own right now. My neighbor's climbs the fence and sits or sleeps on my porch. The cat's phrase I remember from high school is "lingual toilet." Didn't understand it immediately, but it refers to the cat using its tongue as a washcloth.


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks Theresa. Good to see you today. I hope your hubby is recovering well. Thank you for your kind comments; you're too kind.

Yes, the cat's miaow is a good thing. I've known cats who sit with their backs to you when they're annoyed - they do like to be in control, don't they?

Looking forward to your next hub.

Ann


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks, bill. I really value your opinion and your kind words mean a lot.

That's what cats are like; their will is the law it seems!

Hope your Monday is good too - not mundane! Oh, no... that was awful!

Ann


m abdullah javed profile image

m abdullah javed 16 months ago

Ann... You did it once again with astonishing details about the domestic animals... This time cat.... It was a delight to read. Thanks for sharing. Ship's Cat, She's Catty.... The superstition associated.... The description made us dear to the cute animal. Voted up. The idea is unique we are looking forward to get some more.


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 16 months ago from southern USA

You are the cat's meow for sure, dear Ann! I hope that is a compliment as I've heard it all my life but yet to figure out the true meaning ...if not, disregard! LOL

Cats are certainly unique creatures. One cat we had long ago would sit with her back to us if she were mad about something ...just ignoring us and to tell us that we just weren't worth facing at that time hahaha.

George our current cat does like to contribute to the family by leaving dead mice at the doorsteps ...eeks.

I love all of your little stories, creative and delightful as always.

I have been off from work since Thursday tending to my husband after he is recovering from knee surgery. He is resting now and doing well.

Blessings always and thank you for an interesting series


billybuc profile image

billybuc 16 months ago from Olympia, WA

I truly do love this series. You do such a fine job with it, and I'm not saying that because we are friends. My time is limited, so an article has to be entertaining and/or informative for me to invest that time...and yours are always. Well done. I've never been a cat person either, but our cat currently has me wrapped around her little paw. :)

Have a splendid Monday, Ann.

bill


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

B.Leekley: Thanks for the comments. Yes, the marble too! The cat's eye in the story is, of course, the one in the middle of the road to aid traffic at night.

There are lots of cats in literature so I decided not to include them (apart from Carbonel because it's a cute story about a 'witch' and a black cat). Thanks for mentioning TS Eliott - a great one of course.

Ann


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Hi again Lori! Cat got your tongue is in the story but I forgot about raining cats and dogs - so common that I completely overlooked it! Thank you!

Ann


B. Leekley profile image

B. Leekley 16 months ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

The poem mentioned by Paintdrips is "Fog" by Carl Sandburg.

Another work of literature that comes to mind is T. S. Eliot's OLD POSSUM'S BOOK OF PRACTICAL CATS, the source of the musical CATS.

A cathouse is a brothel.

Catting around is indiscriminately, like a tomcat, seeking a willing a mating partner.

He/She/It is the cat's pajamas means is excellent; the phrase was coined by Thomas "Tad" Dorgan.

Cat's-eye is a kind of marble.


lambservant profile image

lambservant 16 months ago from Pacific Northwest

My other facts are Does the cat got your tongue? and it's raining cats and dogs!


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks for reading, Lori, despite the fact that you don't like cats; I appreciate that.

It must be hard being allergic to any animal. I know quite a few people who are, usually dogs it seems.

Yes, that seems to be the favourite idiom so far!

Ann


lambservant profile image

lambservant 16 months ago from Pacific Northwest

As a rule, I dislike cats, but there have been a few exceptions! I'm also allergic to them!

I always loved the idiom, look what the cat dragged in!


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks for your lovely comments, Ruby. I like your story about your cat; I think many cats are spoiled and most probably deserve it!

Yes, I think it's true about the sutures.

Good to see you today!

Ann


always exploring profile image

always exploring 16 months ago from Southern Illinois

I found this very interesting and a delightful read. I read somewhere that during world war two they used cat intestines for suture material. I wonder if that is true? I grew up with a spoiled cat named Kot. My mother adored him to the point of hanging strings to the light fixtures for him to play with. We were eating at the table and Kot began to meow wanting food. My stepfather got up in the middle of his meal and went to the corner grocery store to purchase hamburger for him. Now you know why I called him spoiled. I still feel threatened when a black cat passes in front of me. Funny how old superstitions stay with you...Voted up...


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Good to see you Mary! Thank you for your kind comments and votes. I didn't realise this was going to be so long and had to 'shave' it a little! Glad you enjoyed the story.

Ann


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 16 months ago from New York

Not being careful around cats could be a cat-asrophe! Well done Ann. So much good information, your research and history is certainly interesting, but I have to say your story tops them all!

You've certainly let the cat out of the bag!!!

Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Carb Diva: So glad you liked this! That first photo is of a Kiwi cat who belongs to friends - we'd been Gummy fishing on the beach and he just sat next to this thing as if he saw one every day (well, actually he had seen a few already).

Thought the photos might break a few hearts! Thanks for your comments.

Ann


Carb Diva profile image

Carb Diva 16 months ago

Oh Ann, you've made my happy little heart go pitter-pat. I (could easily be) a crazy cat lady. Have had kitties all my life and have loved every one. I especially like your introductory photo. Voted up!


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Thanks whonu. Glad you enjoyed the read.

Ann


whonunuwho profile image

whonunuwho 16 months ago from United States

Nice work and interesting about our friends the cats. Well done my friend Ann. whonu


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

PAINTDRIPS: Thanks for the comment. I didn't know that poem. I've looked it up and it's short but sweet! It's not the kind of thing I would include, though it's great, because it's someone's phraseology rather than common idioms and sayings. Great atmosphere in it, though, isn't it? Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

Ann


annart profile image

annart 16 months ago from SW England Author

Hi liesl5858! Yes, it's a good phrase, that one! Kind of trips off the tongue.

Thanks for your kind comments and votes; glad you liked this.

Ann


PAINTDRIPS profile image

PAINTDRIPS 16 months ago from Fresno CA

Very interesting. Did you include the poem about the Harbor Fog that came in on little cat feet? I didn't see it.


liesl5858 profile image

liesl5858 16 months ago from United Kingdom

Ann, I like your etymology about cats and your phrases. It is very interesting. My favourite saying or phrase is "Look what the cat brought in". I like this for some reason. Well done, voted up. Love your cat photos as well.

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    annart profile image

    Ann Carr (annart)474 Followers
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    Ann likes to research the history of words, to experiment with them and to encourage others to use fresh words and idioms.



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