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10 expressions on dogs and cats

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Posted on September 11 2018

Our animals have always inspired us to define situations, attitudes and expressions and it becomes part of everyday language.

But what do they really mean? Here are some of them explained:

5 Expressions related to the dog:

  • To look at yourself in faience dog:

This expression means to watch oneself with hostility, to be suspicious of someone.

It dates from the 17th century, when faience figurines adorned the chimneys and often 2 dog figurines stood face to face.

  • The dog barks the trailer moves on :
This expression is used when we ignore criticisms or insults.

This saying is of Arab origin, nomadic encampments were guarded by dogs standing guard. During the passage of long caravans of camels, the dogs barked but the camels remained imperturbable.
  • Have a dog trouble / Make a dog's time:
Finish an expression with "dog" means excess, but negative (it is very bad, very bad).

For a very long time, the dog was considered a dirty, mean and despicable animal. We find traces of this type of expression until the 1st century.

  • As a dog and cat:
It simply means not getting along at all.

This expression dates from the sixteenth century, already at the time, it was clear that the cat and the dog could never get along. And yet ...
  • Dogs are not cats :
The synonym for this expression would be "like father, like son". Quite simply, the expression means that we inherit the tastes, the personality of our parents, we are as we were made.

5 Cat Expressions:

  • A good cat, good rat:

This expression applies when 2 equal forces oppose each other.

Very used in the 17th century in the military field to say that the armies were of equal strength.The most intelligent cats

  • Scalded cat fears cold water :
An unfortunate experience serves as a lesson. One is wary not to be had a second time.

This expression has its origin in the thirteenth century.
  • Give your tongue to the cat:
This sentence is used when one gives up looking for a solution, to find an answer.

Originally the phrase was "Throw its tongue to the dog" and it appeared in the nineteenth century.
  • When the cat's away the mice will play :
This sentence is used in the context of a lack of authority, when one "benefits" to "transgress" the rules.

This proverb appears in the twelfth century in the form of "Where the cat is, mouse reveals itself".
  • Have other cats to whip:
This expression is used to say that we have more important things to do.

It dates from at least the 17th century.

Finally, dogs and cats have been part of our lives for centuries. The French language was inspired by their attitudes and habits. The meaning of these expressions changes according to place and time.

Many other expressions or quotes exist. To you to find the one you like the most ...

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