A-Z Database

A-Z Database

All A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
La La land

A fanciful place of dreamy unreality that popular American etymology would have us believe derives from L.A. or Los Angeles with its connotations of H...

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Posh, affected, either in speech or manner, this expression dates from the mid-19th century and is imitative of what it describes. Sometimes appears a...

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Laanie, variously spelt larny, larnie and sometimes lani is South African informal for posh or fancy. It is thought to derive from Afrikaans but other...

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Labour of love

This is work done for the sheer pleasure of it, without seeking payment or reward. The source is the New Testament Thessalonians I, 1:3, “Remembering...

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Devoid of brightness or quality; coined by Shakespeare to describe the eyes in As You Like it (1600) Act II, Scene V “looking on it with lack-lustre e...

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An adjective used to describe someone as lethargic or listless, which dates from the late 18th century. This in turn derives from a much earlier expre...

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A loan word from the French laquais meaning a footman or valet and in this sense dates from the mid-1500s. From the 1600s onwards is used figuratively...

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British informal for uncouth, rowdy, boisterous and describes the unruly behaviour of young male adolescents. It derives from the concept of being one...

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British informal and is the female equivalent of behaving in a laddish manner. It dates from the 1990s. See Laddish.


Celebratory shout at soccer matches in South Africa when a goal has been scored. It is in fact Zulu, meaning ‘it thunders’.

Lady Muck

see Lord and Lady Muck

Lady of easy virtue

see Easy virtue

Lady of leisure

see Gentleman of leisure

Lady with the lamp

Almost everyone knows this refers to Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) the famous nurse who tended the wounded and the infirm during the Crimean War. T...

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see On the lam

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