Opening Pandora's Box

Phrases Borrowed from the Classics and the Stories Behind Them

About The Book

Are you known to strike like a thunderbolt when things don't go your way?
Are you fortunate enough to have the Midas touch?
Have you ever been struck by Cupid's arrow?

Classically derived expressions are commonly used in our everyday language, yet many of us have little knowledge of the Greek and Roman influences that inspired them. With Opening Pandora's Box you'll discover the fascinating stories behind familiar phrases like Achilles' Heel, a Nemesis, To Fly too Close to the Sun, and more. For example, did you know that...

  • The lifesaving operation known as the Caesarean section is so named because Julius Caesar was delivered by being cut out of his mother's womb?
  • The original labyrinth was built on the orders of King Minos of Crete after Aphrodite cursed his wife to fall in love with a bull and produce a monstrous baby? The king locked the baby in a maze so complicated and tangled that, once in, he would never emerge.
  • The word cereal is derived from the Italian corn goddess Ceres?
Pry open the lid of the English language to find the secrets behind classical phrases we use every day.

Product Details
  • Publisher: Reader's Digest (October 2011)
  • Length: 176 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781606523063

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