Thursday’s quiz

You’re invited to posed the questions.

Anyone who stumps everyone will win a virtual case of moorpark apricots which are at their delicious best right now.

3 Responses to Thursday’s quiz

  1. Andrei says:

    I used the term “tow rag” on another post and in doing so inspired this quizz

    (1) What is the original meaning of “tow rag“?

    (2) From whence did English acquire the term “the devil to pay”?

    (3) likewise for the expression “by and large”?

    (4) and “all above board”?

    (5) and finally “Loose cannon”?

  2. Teletext says:

    Andrei “the seaman”?

    1. I think the actual term is “toe rag” which comes from the poor tying rags around their toes and feet to act as socks. It was mostly done by the tramps or vagrants

    2. It is a very old nautical term. The “devil” was the gap between the planking on a sailing ship and “paying” was the sailors name for caulking or filling these gaps with rope and tar. I believe that the original saying was “paying the devil”

    3. Another old sailing term which means either sailing into the wind or sailing down wind. “By” is sailing close hauled or into the wind or at less than a 45o angle into the wind whilst “large” is having every sail up and sailing downwind.

    4. Yet another seafaring term which comes from the times of the pirates who hid below deck when approaching other ships which the wanted to attack. “Aboveboard” was when everything and everyone was on display when approaching other ships.

    5. You’re on a roll Andrei with yet another nautical term which comes from the old sailing ships which primarily had only cannons as their means of defence. They were well tied down and if one came loose it could severely or even terminally damage the ship.

  3. Teletext says:

    sorry, I confused myself with #1.
    Towrag is a nautical (sailing ship) term for a rope that was hung out from the stern of a ship with a rag tied to it and also a board attached to it which sailors would sit on when they need to go to the toilet.

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