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mar McMahon
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as soon as an injury is continual to the thumb, the limb is often held at a stiff, odd angle that might be evident to observers.

When something sticks out like a sick thumb, it is obviously and plainly out that place. Like plenty of interesting idioms in English, this phrase is used commonly by world who frequently do not protect against to wonder around its origins. After ~ all, nothing about a sore ignorance seems specifically remarkable, therefore it seems odd come think that something sticking out like one.

You are watching: Stick out like a sore thumb origin

Idioms in general are very challenging to language learners, together they rely upon a body of cultural knowledge that may be unfamiliar, and they occasionally use strange sentence structures. The misuse of one idiom have the right to tag someone as a non-native speaker, and also as a result, non-native speakers space often more curious than others about peculiar turns of phrase.


People have actually been describing unusual things with the phrase “it rod out favor a ill thumb” because at the very least the middle of the 16th century, and the idiom is probably much older. The phrase likewise experienced a brief heyday in the 1940s, many thanks to its illustration in the famous Perry Mason series of detective novels. Over there are number of explanations for why a sore thumb in particular might rod out, together opposed to any kind of other body part.


The very first explanation is probably apparent to anyone that has ever injured a limb. When an injury is sustained, the herbal instinct is to safeguard the affected limb, and also as a result, a sore thumb is frequently held at a stiff, odd edge that may be noticeable to also the casual observer. This is particularly true in the case of a sore ignorance that is bandaged, together the bandage will certainly stick out favor a flag and make it more difficult to hold the ignorance in a herbal position. As soon as something rod out favor this, the is challenging to conceal from others, simply as the is tough to hide one injury from observers.


In addition to being noticeable come observers, a ill limb also tends come be prone to re-injury when it is hosted in one awkward position, therefore it have the right to tend to feel choose a gigantic, overlapping target. Because that example, numerous carpenters have battered fingers that space the an outcome of repeated injuries. The same protective instinct the is designed come cushion an hurt limb have the right to actually make it susceptible to risk, and also an ext notable; sick thumbs stick out just like limps do, because people adjust their motions to accommodate them.


There room other colorful ways to say that something rod out prefer a ill thumb. Because that example, civilization historically have said the something reflects up prefer a mustard pot in a coal scuttle, a reference to the shining yellow shade of mustard, which would kind a garish contrast against the black shade of coal. Numerous cultures have emerged their own distinctive and often fanciful ways to describe something the is plainly out the place, express objects and situations that room universally acquainted to world in those cultures.


mar McMahon

Ever due to the fact that she began contributing to the site number of years ago, mary has adopted theexciting an obstacle of gift a wgc2010.org researcher and also writer. Mary has a for free arts degree from Goddard college andspends her totally free time reading, cooking, and exploring the an excellent outdoors.

mary McMahon

Ever due to the fact that she began contributing come the site number of years ago, mary has taken on theexciting an obstacle of being a wgc2010.org researcher and also writer. Mary has actually a free arts degree from Goddard college andspends her cost-free time reading, cooking, and also exploring the an excellent outdoors.

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babylove – an initial of all, don’t beat you yourself up over this. She asked friend a question and also you provided her your moral opinion. Just because you don’t prefer it doesn’t average she shouldn’t wear it.It can be that your Mother-in-Law is proud of her granddaughter and also wants to be well-known for it. Us don’t all prefer to stand out in a crowd. And also oftentimes senior citizens room seen in some brightly colored get-ups. I think if she attract the color yellow well and also it renders her feel an excellent then girlfriend should simply tell her just how nice she looks. babylove might 7, 2011 Okay, i don’t recognize if ns did the appropriate thing or not. Mine Mother-in-Law is going to her granddaughter’s high college graduation in a couple of weeks and also asked mine opinion top top the outfit she’s liked to wear. The a three piece lemon yellow suit! My first thought was, oh no, you’re going to stick out favor a sick thumb! however she only asked if the color looked an excellent on her, and also of food it does. So, ns didn’t actually lie come her about that, yet this thing looks like a huge post-it note. Should I tell her what ns really think that it? article your comment
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