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Your questions answered?

Last week's three-parted question had a lot of people scratching their heads and didn't lead to a lightning quick response.

We all have a tendency to use phrases on a daily basis, but from where did the most commonly used ones originate?

Claire Cowie, of Teams, wanted to know where 'It isn't over till the fat lady sings', 'it's like getting blood from a stone' and 'stealing ones thunder' originated from.

In response to the latter, Tom Jackson answers: "According to a book I have, to steal ones thunder originates from an anecdote of 17th century playwright John Dennis.

"He invented an effective device for producing stage thunder for a play which flopped and was never heard of again.

Soon afterwards Dennis heard his thunder effect in a performance of Macbeth and was most displeased."

Regular YQA fan Jimmy Lakenby has given a suggestion for the origin of 'It isn't over till the fat lady sings'.

He writes: "It comes from the opera The Last Lady to Sing and the lady in question happened to be extremely fat.

"Ultimately, 'it' as in 'it isn't over' is now applied to anything."

WE return to the sporting theme this week, as Jimmy Lakenby wants to know who scored the first ever goal for his beloved Toon. He writes: "Who scored the first ever goal for Newcastle United?"

Another question has come in from J Pitman from Felling. She is curious as to why a certain species sleep in a most unrelaxed fashion. She asks: "Why do bats sleep upside down?"

As usual, write to Mitya Underwood, Your Questions Answered, Evening Chronicle, Groat Market, Newcastle, NE1 1ED, or e-mail
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Copyright 2007 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Mar 26, 2007
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