What are you missing?

Perhaps you are one of thousands who have my first volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions and think you have enough. Well, here’s just a sample of the 1,000 plus new entries in Volume II with their origins:

All bark and no bite

At someone’s beck and call

Be a canary in a coal mine

Beware Greeks bearing gifts

Bless your heart!

Blood money

Blow (or toot) your own horn

Bound and determined

Breathing down someone’s neck

Brothers ion arms

Bum steer

Butter someone up

Call a spade a spade

Calm before the storm

Cardinal rule

Cat nap

Clean someone’s clock

Cock and bull story

Cold as Kraut

Cold hard facts

Conjure up

Cook the books

Cry all the way to the bank

A crying shame

Damaged goods

Darken someone’s door

The devil is in the detail

Digging up bones

Doing a number on someone

Don’t give up your day job

Drama queen

Draw a blank

Drop in the ocean

Dry up and blow away

Duke’s mixture

Dutch courage

Elephant in the room

Expect the best and plan for the worst

Fact is stranger than fiction

The fat’s in the fire

Feed a cold, starve a fever

Fess up!

First past the post

Five o’clock shadow

Flattery will get you nowhere / everywhere

Follow the money

For crying out loud!

From stem to stern

A gentleman and a scholar

Get a handle on something

Get the show on the road

A ghost of a chance

Give away the farm

Going rogue

Good things come in small packages

Grinning from ear to ear

Hard core

Hatched up

Have bigger fish to fry

HAve one’s mind in the gutter

Having eyes in the back of one’s head

Helicopter parent

He who hesitates is lost

Hidden in plain sight

Hog heaven

Hold down the fort

A hop, skip and a jump

Hot off the press

How’s that working out for you?


I can resist anything but temptation

If I’d known you were coming I would have baked you a cake

If you don’t like it you can lump it

I’ll be John Brown

In cahoots

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting different result

IN the cold light of day

In the middle of nowhere

Well, I could obviously go on and on! But ‘You get the picture!’ If you don’t have the second volume you are missing a lot!

Both are available right now on Amazon worldwide.




An author’s greatest pleasure

An author’s greatest pleasure is sincere praise from other authors. They, more than anyone else, realize what it takes to put together a work, be it a novel,  a work of detailed research, or any other genre, consisting of hundreds of pages which captures to attention of the reader and makes it difficult to lay down once started.

When I saw the reviews that two of my accomplished author friends had posted on Amazon, I was deeply honored and humbled.  Lee Pennington, a retired University of Louisville, KY professor, poet and three-time nominee for the Pulitzer Prize in Literature wrote the following about Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions Volume II:

5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece!

By Lee Pennington on September 23, 2016
Stanley J. St. Clair’s “Most Comprehensive Origins of Clichés, Proverbs, and Figurative Expressions” Vol. II is a masterpiece!
Be prepared to delay your own work when you get hold of this book. It will take away your focus from whatever you’re doing at the moment and send you on a delightful journey through a world of discovery. It’s a total delight to sit and read where our most used expressions actually came from, where they were first used.
This book will be around for years to come and will be used over and over by those wanting to know where those little sayings came from. It will be a very special tool for many, many people and will never be far from hand when they want to look something up.
All the sayings are in alphabetical order so it’s so easy to look up that expression you’re so familiar with and wanted to know its origin. Everything is there from “an ace up one’s sleeve” to “it‘s a dog’s life” to being on the “wrong end of a stick.”
I could go on and on, but if you’ll excuse me, I’d like to get back to the book and look up a few more expressions.
This book is a must for your library!
Lee Pennington
Gail Deiderich, a retired school teacher and writer for the Tampa Bay Times posted the following:
By Gail Diederich on September 22, 2016
Stan St. Clair has done it again! He has provided an intriguing, interesting and extremely well done compilation of expressions used in language. Whether one is a reader, a writer or simply one who enjoys using oral language effectively in conversations, this book is a treasure to have in hand at all times. This is Volume ll and makes an excellent companion/continuation of what St. Clair did in Volume l. For the person who appreciates the richness of expressions in language, this book satisfies like no other that I have found. Beyond all of this, it is a highly enjoyable book to simply pick up for a relaxed moment and discover the meaning of phrases, their origins and the history that supports many. Both volumes are impressive with their large number of entries, all well documented. I hope there will be a Vol. lll. I’ll be first in line to get a copy.
A dear researcher friend of mine in London, UK, sent me an email which included the following:

Dear Stan,

I do not know whether to praise you or kill you because ever since  Volume II arrived I have been unable to put it down which means my own work has had to be put aside.  It is the best book you have written so far.  I particularly like the overall composition of the book and, in particular, the care you have taken to give the origins of the various expressions.  Truly a commendable and memorable piece of writing which must represent thousands of hours of work


This book, and the original volume make excellent Christmas gifts and they are available on Amazon worldwide.



Special offer on signed book set!

Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative E


When I published the first volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions it was my hope that it would become a standard bearer in its genre for people to discover new truths about the fascinating English language. I am happy to say that it has. On a regular basis I hear or read new reports of how the book is used. A minister said that it helped him in preparation of his sermons, and in his opinion was the best book every published of its type. A school teacher said that it was great for helping with students, and it has been praised by numerous authors. About a week ago I heard a head librarian on a radio talk show say that he kept his copy on his desk at the library and referred to it regularly. Then about a day later I saw a thesis on line which had been written by a PHD student at Vanderbilt University to obtain her doctorate which quoted this book. The thesis was approved. Just this morning I saw a new review on Amazon.com by a man who, as a newspaper writer, gave a copy of two books to a Ukranian student to help him learn English. This book was one of those two. He, like 21 out of 24 reviewing it on Amazon, gave it 5 stars. Now my new book has barely hit the Internet. For those who enjoyed the first book, it is just as detailed and deeply researched as the first. For those who don’t have either, I have had my webmaster, Kent, place a special offer on the site for the books as a set at a special price. Those of you who read  this and order this set from my site at stclairpublications.com will be receiving signed copies. I appreciate each of you very much! .

Most Comprehensive Origins...

Knowledge puts the brain in gear and Wisdom drives it on.

I am proud to be part of a community of authors who are dedicated to research and determined to burst myths and uncover truth about our past, our beliefs, and our world.

My phrase origin books have been the result of several years of dedicated research on my part, along with input of others and my determination not to accept the common teachings or myths passed down by others just because they are cute stories. My friends, Gerald Sinclair and Rondo B B Me wrote a delightful book about our Scottish Clan’s mysterious past in an effort to get to the truth It is called The Enigmatic Sinclairs, Volume I and a second volume is forthcoming. Gerry has a Facebook group called Truth Conquers All.

I, also, just released a second volume of over 1,000 new phrases and sayings with their most likely origins.The books are called Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, and the original volume has had worldwide success.

I have just revised Volume II, and all future copies ordered will include my new copyrighted slogan in the front, Knowledge puts the brain in gear and Wisdom drives it on. Without increased knowledge we would never grow mentally. WIthout wisdom we could not properly handle the knowledge imparted to us. Reading and applying books which have been thoroughly researched will equip us for living a rich happy life. Order your copies of my books at http://stclairpublications.com or on any Amazon site in the world.