Baloney: It's Just Not True
Expressions used to describe false, wrong or foolish things.
Now, the VOA Special English program, Words and Their Stories.
Baloney is a kind of sausage that many Americans eat often. The word also has another meaning in English. It is used to describe something – usually something someone says – that is false or wrong or foolish.
Baloney sausage comes from the name of the Italian city,
Some language experts think this different taste is responsible for the birth of the expression baloney.
Baloney is an idea or statement that is nothing like the truth…in the same way that baloney sausage tastes nothing like the meat that is used to make it.
Baloney is a word often used by politicians to describe the ideas of their opponents.
The expression has been used for years. Fifty years ago, a former governor of
A similar word has almost the same meaning as baloney. It even sounds almost the same. The word is blarney. It began in
The lord of Blarney castle, near
The Irish castle now is famous for its
A former Roman Catholic bishop of
Another expression is pulling the wool over someone’s eyes. It means to make someone believe something that is not true. The expression goes back to the days when men wore false hair, or wigs, similar to those worn by judges today in British courts.
The word wool is a popular joking word for hair. If you pulled a man’s wig over his eyes, he could not see what was happening. Today, when you pull the wool over someone’s eyes, he cannot see the truth.
This VOA Special English program, Words and Their Stories, was written by Marilyn Christiano. I’m Warren Scheer.