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  1. #1
    Tripp is offline Newbie
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    Default "as all get-out"

    I am looking for the origin of the expression "...as all get-out," as in "He was lazy as all get-out!"

    Also, although I know how to use this phrase in context, I am wondering if anyone can offer a succint definition.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    I don't know - but I'd guess that 'get-out' is a sort of 'meta-euphemism' that lets the speaker get out of saying 'Hell'.

    b

  3. #3
    Tripp is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    Hmm. Good theory.

    But why "meta"-euphemism?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    To get out of saying 'dead' you say 'passed away': that's a euphemism.
    To get out of saying 'hell' you say 'get out'; you might as well say '...as all "euphemism"'. Hence my choice of words.

    b

    PS ... but it's not a term recognized in any theoretical discourse community. I just made it up
    Last edited by BobK; 18-May-2011 at 13:24. Reason: Added PS

  5. #5
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    I use "as all get out" frequently. It simply means "to a very great degree."

    He was mad as all get out! = He was really, really mad!
    Oh, don't ask her. She's as mean as all get out! = She is really mean and won't help you.

    I don't know its origins or how it came to mean this, but I do use it.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  6. #6
    Route21's Avatar
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    Hi Tripp

    I'm with BobK on this one - never ever come across it in BrE.

    Regards
    R21

  7. #7
    Tripp is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    I've just never really understood the meaning of "Meta-."

  8. #8
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    Quote Originally Posted by Tripp View Post
    I've just never really understood the meaning of "Meta-."
    Try:
    meta- - definition of meta- by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.
    Regards
    R21

  9. #9
    Tripp is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    Did you actually look it up yourself at that link? Tell me which definition you think applies best (I challenge you). But you know, that's not the important point of the my thread, as I already understand the idiom in context. What I am most interested in is the derivation of the phrase. Many "figures of speech" can be traced back to their roots - some logical, some quirky and fun. I was hoping to find that here. Keep your thinking caps on, y'all!

  10. #10
    Route21's Avatar
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    Default Re: "as all get-out"

    Quote Originally Posted by Tripp View Post
    I've just never really understood the meaning of "Meta-."
    In answer to your question, in researching my answers I always check out any suggested links before even thinking of framing a possible answer.

    I just provided the link to potentially help you better understand the possible meanings/nuances of "meta-".

    As BobK which one applies to his post.

    R21

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