Posted by R. Berg on December 14, 2001 at
In Reply to: How do we get Dead Nuts On from accurate posted by jacob on December 14, 2001
: I know Dead Nuts On means accurate, but why?
For several centuries now, "dead" has meant utterly, profoundly, absolutely, quite, as in "dead tired" or "dead right." This use derives from the earlier use to mean "in a manner, or to a degree, characteristic of or suggesting death; with extreme inactivity, stillness, etc." (Oxford English Dictionary; first quotation for this sense, "Wherof she swouned in his honde, And as who saith lay dede oppressed," dated 1393). Someone else will have to explain the nuts; I wasn't aware they'd been inserted.