Tag: Bible

"Of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh." - The Bible (1611)

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Book quiz: Go Set a Watchman and other Biblical titles

The news that a second novel by Harper Lee is to be published this year has caused excitement around the world. Her 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird has long been considered a modern classic, and soon readers will be able to read about Scout as an adult…

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English is filled with apple idioms

A list of apple idioms

Let’s have a look at the role of apple idioms in the English language… Good and bad apples Apples in expressions often seem to be used as an equivalent for the word thing or person. Somebody can be described as a good apple, bad apple, or rotten apple, and New York City even becomes the Big […]

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8 phrases that come from Exodus

The film Exodus, directed by Ridley Scott and released this month, is part of a continuing trend of depicting the Bible on screen. Noah was released earlier in 2014, and Christian scripture has long provided material for the silver screen – from The Passion of the Christ and The Ten Commandments to (more tangentially) Monty Python’s […]

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How do British and American attitudes to dictionaries differ?

For 20 years, 14 of those in England, I’ve been giving lectures about the social power afforded to dictionaries, exhorting my students to discard the belief that dictionaries are infallible authorities. The students laugh at my stories about nuns who told me that ain’t couldn’t be a word because it wasn’t in the (school) dictionary […]

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Can you tell if these quotations are from the Bible or Shakespeare?

Are these quotations from the Bible or Shakespeare?

23 April, as every schoolchild knows, is probably the birthday, and definitely the deathday, of England’s most famous writer: William Shakespeare, often known simply as the Bard. (We don’t know his exact birth date, but he was baptized on 26 April, and it lends his life an appropriately poetic balance to assume he was born […]

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