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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Why Do We Say It?

I have a book called "Why Do We Say It? The Stories Behind the Words, Expressions, and Cliches We Use." It's kinda interesting to learn the history and meanings of unusual sayings or words. I thought I'd write a post each Tuesday talking about a new word or saying and the story behind it.

The first one I chose is "macaroni."


Why did Yankee Doodle call himself "macaroni"?
Because that was the then current name for a "fop" or a "dandy". It was the name for a dandy because a group of well-traveled young Englishmen of wealth and position formed a club called the "Macaroni Club" in London, around 1760. They named the club that because they were fond of foreign cooking. These young men also dressed in a foreign manner; the common people misunderstood the use of the word "macaroni" and took the name of their club to be descriptive of their dress. (Why Do We Say It, Castle Books 1985)

See? If you're like me, you've always kinda wondered about that song...now you finally know why it is that:
"Yankee Doodle went to town
 riding on a pony,
stuck a feather in his hat
and called it macaroni"
Pretty cool, huh? :-P

1 comment:

  1. Very nice! I vaguely wondered about that.. Thanks for clearing that up! (:

    ReplyDelete

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