Why are really hot summer days called “dog days”?
Because the ancient Romans believed that the six or eight hottest days of the summer were the result of the heat that the rising of Sirius [the Dog Star] added to the already blistering summer sun. They called these days cuniculares dies — “dog days.”
Why do we say “putting on the dog” when we mean to splurge?
During the 1860s, the King Charles spaniel was at the height of its popularity with the aristocrats of Great Britain. They and their masters always seemed to represent the very essence of “high class.”
What does “Love me, love my dog” mean?
Whatever my faults, if you love me you must put up with them. (And my dog’s too!)
What does the expression “dog in the manger” mean?
The allusion is to the fable of a dog who lay in the manger on top of the hay and would not let the horse or ox enjoy their food—even though the dog himself could not eat it.
Does every dog really have his day?
According to the proverb every dog has his day, i.e., everyone will at some time, at least once, be like the dog that, beaten and mistreated all its life, one day turns and snaps at its tormentor.
How did the dogwood tree get its name?
The tree got its name from its berries, which were called “dogberries” because they were worthless—“dog” is commonly used among botanists to mean “inferior quality” or “worthlessness.”
Where did we get the expression “hair of the dog”?
There is an old maxim that says “Like cures like.” Following this line of thinking, the best cure for a dog bite is to put some of that dog’s hair on the wound. Thus, if you have a hangover, the best “cure” must be some of what gave you the hangover—a little drink.
Has it ever really rained cats and dogs?
One possible time could have been during the Middle Ages. Feral cats and dogs roamed everywhere in the towns and villages. Frequently dogs chasing cats over rooftops would be caught in a sudden downpour and all would come tumbling down as they lost their footing on the slick roofs.
Did you know...
Blind, toothless, hairless, and very tiny at birth, polar bear cubs remain with their mothers for two and a half years learning the hunting skills essential to their survival in the harsh arctic ecosystem.