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Re: Meanings and origins

Posted by R. Berg on January 31, 2002

In Reply to: Meanig orgin posted by kimo on January 31, 2002

: can anyone give me the meanig and orgin of the following prases, "bank teller" "sleep like a top" and"greenhorn"

A bank teller is a person who works behind the counter in a bank, serving customers. An old meaning of "tell" was "count," and tellers count money.
To sleep like a top is to sleep very deeply and soundly. I don't know why that's called sleeping like a top. Possibly the reason is that when a spinning top (the child's toy) stops spinning, it comes to a complete stop and lies utterly still.
A greenhorn is a recent immigrant who hasn't yet learned the ways of his or her new country, or, more generally, anyone who is inexperienced, immature, or gullible. The word originally referred to young animals with immature horns, like deer and elk.