Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Pot.

E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
This word, like “father,” “mother,” “daughter,” etc., is common to the whole A’ryan family. Greek, potr, a drinking-vessel; Latin, poc-ulumi.e. potaculum; Irish and Swedish, pota; Spanish, pote; German, pott; Danish, potte; French, Welsh, Anglo-Saxon, pott, etc.   1
   Gone to pot. Ruined, gone to the bad. The allusion is to the pot into which refuse metal is cast to be remelted, or to be discarded as waste.   2
        “Now and then a farm went to pot.”—Dr. Arbuthnot.
   The pot calls the kettle black. This is said of a person who accuses another of faults committed by himself. The French say, “The shovel mocks the poker” (La pelle se moque du fourgon).   3
   To betray the pot to the roses. To betray the rose pot—that is, the pot which contains the rose-nobles. To “let the cat out of the bag.” (French, Decouvrir le pot aux roses.)   4
   Brazen and earthen pots. Gentlemen and artisans, rich and poor, men of mark and those unstamped. From the fable of the Brazen and Earthen Pots.   5
        “Brazen and earthen pots float together in juxtaposition down the stream of life.”—Pall Mall Gazette.



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