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Lay an Egg Origins and Meaning

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Kieran in Huntsville, Alabama, wonders about the term laid an egg meaning performed badly. The expression to lay an egg goes back at least as far as cricket matches in the 1860s, where duck’s egg referred to a zero on a scoreboard. Later in the United States, the term goose egg denoted the same thing. The metaphor was extended to the notion of laying an egg, and not just any egg, but a rotten one, suggesting a performance was bad. This is part of a complete episode.

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