Posted by ESC on May 07, 2004
In Reply to: Whats the meaning posted by dd on May 07, 2004
: whats the meaning of the phrase:
: "spilled the water with the baby??"
: thank you
"Don't throw the baby out with the bath water. (Don't empty out the baby with.) A German proverb of unknown origins, it was current in German at least as early as the seventeenth century, when the astronomer Johannes Kepler included the passage, 'This is a caution.lest you throw out the baby with the bath water,' in Tertius Interveniens' . The saying apparently first appeared in English in the writings of Thomas Carlyle, who reported, 'The Germans say, 'You must empty out the bathing-tub, but not the baby along with it.' George Bernard Shaw used the proverb in the preface to 'Getting Married' , noting, 'We shall in a very literal sense empty the baby out with the bath.'" From "Wise Words and Wives Tales" by Stuart Flexner and Doris Flexner (Avon Books, New York, 1993):