A-Z Database

A-Z Database

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Not touch with a barge pole

This expression dates from the 19th century and means that someone or something is so unappealing that one would not go anywhere near them. A barge po...

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Not touch with a ten foot pole

see Not touch with a barge pole

Not turn a hair

Most commonly expressed in the negative i.e. did not turn a hair or without turning a hair and means to remain calm and unruffled. This figurative use...

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Not worth a brass farthing

see Brass farthing

Not worth a continental

see Not give/worth a continental

Not worth a hill/row of beans

Chaucer in Troilus and Criseyde c. 1380 wrote, “Such arguments … nat worth a bene.” Therefore, beans have been viewed as worthless for centuries. Fast...

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Not worth a red cent

see Red cent

Not worth a tinker’s damn/curse/cuss

see Tinker’s damn/curse/cuss

Not worth one’s salt

see Worth one’s salt

Not worth the candle

Not worth the candle means worthless or unjustifiable because of the trouble or cost involved and dates from the 1600s. The origin is French and it fi...

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Nothing left in the tank

see Leave something in the tank.

Nothing to crow about

see Something to crow about

Nothing to write home about

A colloquialism that means unremarkable, not worth mentioning and has been used in this figurative sense since the early 20th century, from the obviou...

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Nothing ventured, nothing gained

A very old English proverb appears in various forms and dates from the time of Chaucer and probably before. Chaucer wrote in Troilus and Criseyde c.13...

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Nous means common sense and dates from the late 17th/early 18th century and is a direct borrowing from the Classical Greek nous (vous) meaning mind or...

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