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The Origin of the Term “Bating” in Falconry

Jenny from Portland, Oregon, is fascinated by the language of falconers. In falconry, the word bate means “to flap the wings impatiently.” A similarly spelled verb, which has nothing to do with falconry, figures in the expression to wait...

Know Here from Siccum

You don’t know siccum, meaning “you don’t know anything,” is an idiom common in the American Northwest. It’s a shortened form of he doesn’t know come here from sic ’em, as in a dog that doesn’t know...

Trade-Lasts

A North Carolina woman says when she told her friend she had a TL for her, the friend had no idea what she was talking about. She learns that the term is a shortened form of a secondhand compliment also known as a trade-last or last-go-trade. This...