Posted by Gary Martin on January 02, 2004
In Reply to: Cold enogh to freeze the balls on a brass monkey posted by john on January 01, 2004
: great rationale given except that the original phrase was cold enogh to freeze the balls ON a brass monkey.Hope this clears up all the scientific confusion .
What makes you think that? Partridge's Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English and the Oxford Dictionary of Idioms record 'cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey' as a late 19th century phrase. Have you any examples of the use of 'cold enough to freeze the balls on a brass monkey' from earlier?