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Does anyone know where or how this idiom comes from?
Appreciate your answers,
Nurit from Israel.
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it is said to an actor as a good luck token before going on the stage
I wonder if it would be appropriate to say "break a leg" to a surgeon who is about to perform a complicated hip operation.
Or to a hitman heading out to a kill.
This phrase dates back to the 1920's and is superstition against wishing an actor good luck. Many people think the origin comes from when in 1865 John Wilkes Booth, who was an actor, broke his leg while leaping to kill President Linoln during a play at the Ford's Theatre. But, this does not really seem like it is related to good luck. Some stage actors think it has to do with bending your knee when you bow, like at the end of a successful play.