Today’s Did You Know comes from the Origin of Expressions Deck…
Boilerplate: standard language – Typesetting plates supplied to newspaper printers for material that seldom changed became known as boilerplate because they resembled the plates used to build boilers.
Baker’s Dozen: Thirteen – Early English bakers were regulated and could be fined or suffer physical punishment if they shorted an order. So they used to add an extra loaf to avoid the risk.
Let the cat out of the bag: disclose a secret – This phrase comes from the ploy of substituting a cat in the bag for a pig at market. When the bag was opened the truth was revealed.
Scuttle butt: gossip – Drinking water on a sailing ship was stored in a small barrel, called a scuttlebutt. Sailors often gossiped when they gathered for a drink or water (also where the water cooler thing came from!).
Worth his salt: giving value for the money – Roman soldiers were given money specifically to buy salt or were paid with salt which was considered very valuable.
And there you have it! Go forth and use these phrases knowing full well what you’re talking about!