View Full Version : Old Phrases


Pan Pan Splash
4th Sep 2006, 14:35
Can anyone explain to me the term "Daft as a brush"?? where did it originate??



Jerricho
4th Sep 2006, 14:38
You ever had an intelligent conversation with a brush?

GANNET FAN
4th Sep 2006, 14:42
Daft as a box of frogs



merde

Chesty Morgan
4th Sep 2006, 14:48
Daft as a brush (http://www.phrases.org.uk/bulletin_board/3/messages/363.html)

Made me chuckle!!!

Foss
4th Sep 2006, 14:49
Think it's to do with child chimney sweeps, wether it was daft to do it maybe.

Whisht - go away. No idea where that comes from.

Fos

LOOPYGIRL
4th Sep 2006, 14:50
Pan pan read on this will answer your question.then lookat this site

http://members.aol.com/mickmjs/sayings.htm


Daft as a brush

Neil Horlock (neil@<hidden>): I am curious as to the origin of the phrase 'Daft as a brush' It strikes me that it could be derived from one of two sources. Firstly, the brush as the tail of a fox (hence it would be a hunting term), or secondly, from the chimney sweeps of the industrial revolution. Does anyone have any real idea though? Neil
L.Dyce: I had never heard of this phrase until I attended a lecture on Linguistic Archaeology (part of a Sociology course) in Massachusetts about ten years ago. The lecture highlighted the range of linguistic sources available : that many idiomatic phrases reflect everyday usages of the common man in contradistinction to the literary quotations of a more erudite class. The poster is correct in his suggestion of the Victorian chimney sweep as a source for this phrase. The child sweep is almost a cliche of the Victorian period, but very few know much of who these children were and what they did. The skilled child sweep would have to work his way vertically through the confined space, clearing blockages and removing the build up of soot by hand. Apprentice sweeps were merely dropped head first down the flue, leading to light stunning in small houses but some severe cerebral damage in larger ones. Hence the phrase. Incidentally, the high mortality of this practise lead to a shortage of chimney sweeps, and even today it is accounted lucky to meet a sweep.

Foss
4th Sep 2006, 14:53
You're not that sick, it's just a bad case of the flue.
coat and all that

Fos

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!
4th Sep 2006, 15:07
Apprentice sweeps were merely dropped head first down the flue, leading to light stunning in small houses but some severe cerebral damage in larger ones. Hence the phrase.Do you REALLY think they were"dropped head first" down the chimney? Does that sound like an efficient way to clean a chimney? I don't believe it for a minute and when these stories get circulated, they just gain creedence until they become "the truth".

sorry, rant off.

and apologies to LOOPYGIRL for my reaction. It's just one of those things that irritate me.

LOOPYGIRL
4th Sep 2006, 15:20
Do you REALLY think they were"dropped head first" down the chimney? Does that sound like an efficient way to clean a chimney? I don't believe it for a minute and when these stories get circulated, they just gain creedence until they become "the truth".

sorry, rant off.

and apologies to LOOPYGIRL for my reaction. It's just one of those things that irritate me.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh!

No apologie required i just found it on the net, im not that fussed on the thought of kids dangling down chimneys head first either.

FLCH
4th Sep 2006, 15:25
http://members.madasafish.com/~openbanana/puppets/basil.jpg
Basils a bit thick inni ??

ORAC
4th Sep 2006, 15:46
According to Wikipedia, Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable says it was adapted as a catch phrase from the northern phrase "soft as a brush" by the comedian Ken Platt (http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4158/is_19981003/ai_n14195333).

Then in January 1951 came the call: at three days' notice he was offered the position of resident comedian on Variety Fanfare. This hugely popular series, billed in Radio Times as "heralding variety in the North", had begun in April 1949 with the popular "shaggy dog" comedian Michael Howard as the resident. Later came Douglas "Cardew" Robinson, the six-foot skinny schoolboy, so clearly Platt was following in famous funny footsteps. During this run of a year he added another catchphrase to his repertoire: "Daft as a brush!"

Nigel Rees, in his "Phrases & Sayings: Over 3,000 origins explained", reports Platt as saying in an interview in 1979 that, "I started saying 'daft as a brush' when I was doing shows in the Army in the 1940s. People used to write and tell me I'd got it wrong!"

However, Rees also says Eric Partridge/Slang suggests the word 'daft' was in use before this, and Paul Beale, reviser of Partridge's work, says "daft as a brush without bristles" was in use in the 1920s.

Take your choice......

LOOPYGIRL
4th Sep 2006, 15:48
http://www.renegadezen.com/images/basil.jpg dont look to clever here :rolleyes:

Foss
4th Sep 2006, 16:29
I've had enough, I can't cope, BOOM BOOM.
Probably just the one boom.

tony draper
4th Sep 2006, 16:36
Oh I remember Cardew Robinson, AKA Cardew the Cad, buggah one must be old.:(
Worrabout Daft as a bag of hammers?.recal one of Les Dawsons.
"They were at it like a frog up a stirrup pump"