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Strange Words and Their Origins

The term "moron" entered our vocabulary when Molière, in his play La Princesse d’Elide, gave a dim-witted character the name Moron.

The phrase, "Often a bridesmaid but never a bride," actually comes from an advertisement for Listerine mouthwash. The text was written by Milton Feasley and first appeared in 1925. The advertisement was so successful that it ran for more than 10 years.

Limousines originally got their name because they were first built in the Limousin region of France.

Caterpillar" means "hairy cat" in Old French.

"Pez" (as in the candy) comes from the German, PfeffErminZ, meaning peppermint.

"Squash" comes from a Native American word, "isquoutersquash," which means "green thing eaten green."

Spain literally means "the land of rabbits."

The word "gymnasium" comes from the Greek word gymnazein which means "to exercise na ked."

The word "mafia" was created as an acronym for Morte alla francia italia adela, meaning literally "Death to the French is Italy's cry."

The word "avocado" comes from the Spanish word "aguacate," which in turn is derived from the Aztec word "ahuacatl" which meant test icle.

The "ZIP" in "ZIP code" stands for "Zoning Improvement Plan."

According to an old Egyptian text, a delicate nerve runs from the fourth finger of a person's left hand to their heart, thus explaining the origin why that finger is the "wedding finger."

If you knock on wood, the spririt in the tree will protect you.

The sh*tty end of the stick? Well,you got that when you grabbed the wrong end of the pole used to lift the bucket in the outhouse. bummer!

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