Posted by Prateek on November 19, 2006
In Reply to: Re: "Its Beggers belief" posted by Smokey Stover on October 18, 2006
: : : what's the meaning of "Its Beggers belief"
: : This is a mishearing of "It beggars belief," in which "beggars" is a verb. The whole expression means, roughly, "It's incredible" or "I can't believe it."
: : To beggar a person is to reduce him or her to poverty. By analogy, to beggar something else, such as belief, is to exhaust its resources. A ridiculous assertion like "The moon is made of green cheese" beggars belief: believing it would use up all your capacity for believing. ~rb
: Good explanation! Even I can understand it.
The explanation given by R. Berg is not well reasoned. Its rather vague. To beggar someone's belief would be to use up one's capacity for believing and more explicitly to end one's belief in something, convince someone to disbelieve his/her previous beliefs.
"The moon is made of cheese" doesn't beggar belief. Its just a conflicting supposition to the belief that the moon is made of cosmic matter(and that its not made of cheese).