That takes the cake

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rdgriskus

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I'm trying to find the origin of the idiom; "that takes the cake"/

Any ideas on where t his came from?
Any ideas on reference resources? Thank you--------
 

stanislaw.masny

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I'm trying to find the origin of the idiom; "that takes the cake"/

Any ideas on where this came from?
Any ideas on reference resources? Thank you--------
Dear rdgriskus
1.As Early as the 5th century the Greeks used 'take the cake' as symbolic of prize for victory. (See: "The knights" by Aristophanes, written in 424 BC).
It was along way the expression entered into English language in 19th century in translation from ancient Greek.
Some authorities consider that this saying goes back to the days of in the slavery in the USA. It was connected with so called 'cake-walk'.
2. Resources: The internet.
Thank you for the question.
Regards. S.M.
 

BobK

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Also, in Br English, we have the expression 'take the biscuit'. I'm not sure the Americans have :?:'take the cookie':?: - which would bring us back to 'cake' (by way of the Dutch for 'cake').

b
 

TheParser

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Also, in Br English, we have the expression 'take the biscuit'. I'm not sure the Americans have :?:'take the cookie':?: - which would bring us back to 'cake' (by way of the Dutch for 'cake').

b

***** NOT A TEACHER *****

(1) In the United States, some people (probably not the younger generation) say:

You take the cake (usually in a negative sense):

I have met some rude people in my life, but you take the cake!

Some sources say that it can also be used in a positive sense, but

I personally find it strange:

Everyone I know dresses very nicely, but you take the cake. (?????)

(2) No, Americans would never say, "You take the biscuit/cookie."

(a) For Americans, a biscuit is a little bread (with ham and eggs).

(b) For Americans, a cookie is what you chaps call a biscuit.
 
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