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Baited breath

(8 posts)
  • Started 6 years ago by Lighthouse
  • Latest reply from Lighthouse
  • Topic Viewed 2005 times

Lighthouse
Lighthouse
Posts: 13598

For those who know the older spelling (bated) or are confused with the difference, baited breath makes you think of something evocative; Geoffrey Taylor wrote this poem, Cruel Clever Cat:

Sally, having swallowed cheese,
Directs down holes the scented breeze,
Enticing thus with baited breath
Nice mice to an untimely death.

Posted 6 years ago
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Bartman
Bartman
Posts: 1287

I've often wondered where that term came from. Thank goodness we have someone well read as you around
here. Learned something new today. Thank you.

Posted 6 years ago
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Lighthouse
Lighthouse
Posts: 13598

That is actually not where the term came from. It is far older. I will look and edit here with a link.
Voila
http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-bai1.htm

Posted 6 years ago
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Bartman
Bartman
Posts: 1287

Ah Shakespeare. Interesting.

Posted 6 years ago
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Lighthouse
Lighthouse
Posts: 13598

Ah yes, old Waggle Staff...How I hated him at school :(

Posted 6 years ago
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ScottW
ScottW
Posts: 6609

When I hear "baited" breath, I think of the kind of bait used for fishing. Disgusting stuff and not anything you want on your breath!

Posted 6 years ago
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Lighthouse
Lighthouse
Posts: 13598

ScottW. That's why I mentioned "maggots" before. And yes, I have eaten maggots (full of protein). :)

Posted 6 years ago
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Lighthouse
Lighthouse
Posts: 13598

And I would love to try one of these.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Witchetty_grub

Posted 6 years ago
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