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Boss

andyg 于2006-04-08发布 l 已有人浏览
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&raquo Download Audio(mp3) By Jerilyn Watson 2006-4-8 I'm Susan Clark with the Special English program

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by jerilyn watson
2006-4-8

i'm susan clark with the special english program 'words and their stories'.

the italians have an old saying 'y dolce far niente'. the words mean it is sweet or enjoyable to do nothing. on weekends and during holidays, many of us enjoy doing nothing. but most of the time, we have to work and to keep our jobs, we must work hard. our employer will not like it if we do nothing.

american workers often call their employers ' bosses'. the word 'boss' comes from the dutch word 'baas' meaning master. sometimes company bosses are called the brass. they are also sometimes called 'top brass' or 'brass hats'. experts disagree about how the strange expression started, but they may have come from britain. leaders of the 19th century british army wore pieces of metal called oak leaves on their hats. the metal brass has a color similar to that of gold. so a leader or a commander came to be called a member of the brass or he might have been called a brass hat or even the top brass.

by the 1940s, the expression had spread beyond military leaders. it also included civilian officials. a newspaper in the american city of philadelphia used the term in 1949. it called the most important police officials top brass. other expressions that mean boss or employer have nothing to do with brass or hats. one of these is 'big cheese'. a cheese is a solid food made from milk. the expression probably started in america in the late 19th century. some experts believe it comes from a word in the persian or urdu languages. cheese, the meaning is a thing. so the meaning of ' big cheese' may be a big thing.

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