Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Under the Weather

I was going to just write a quick post to apologise for not getting round all the blogs I should be getting round. I am feeling absolutely crap today as the cold virus that's doing the rounds has finally caught up with me. So if you have visited my blog, and I know a few new faces have, I will be round to return the compliment very soon, I promise!

So that's what I was going to do but as I wrote it, it struck me that what an odd phrase "under the weather" is. We are all, technically, under the weather all the time given that the weather is up in the sky and that is very definitely above us. So I googled the phrase and I cna now share its origins with you.

"Under the weather" is a nautical term that was originated, I believe, in the British navy. When a sailor was ill, he was kept below decks, and thus, under the weather.

Moreover, the deck they were under was likely "the weather deck", meaning the most exposed deck on the ship, usually the foredeck (over the seamen's quarters at the front end of the ship) or the quarterdeck (where the helm was located, high for a good view). Either way, if you needed to be sick, you wouldn't want to "toss your cookies" where the wind could toss them back in your face, nor would anyone with you want you to do so. You'd be firmly told to "under the weather" to be sick.

There you go and don't say you never learn anything by stopping by here!

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