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Re: Don't throw the baby out with the bath water

Posted by Smokey Stover on April 30, 2007

In Reply to: Re: Don't throw the baby out with the bath water posted by Victoria S Dennis on April 27, 2007

: : What does "don't throw the baby out with the bath water" mean?

: It means "take care, when getting rid of outworn and unnecessary things, not to jettison something important along with them". It originates from a 15th-century German satire, and was used by Martin Luther. (Do not believe anybody who tells you that it derives from mediaeval bathing habits - i.e. that peasant families would all use the same
bathwater till it was so filthy that the baby could go missing in it. This is an Internet myth. See articles here: http://www.deproverbio.com/DPjournal//DP,1,1,95//BABY.html
: and here:
: http://historymedren.about.com/od/dailylifesociety/a/bod_baths.htm
: (VSD)

Victoria, I have another one for you, same story, different site. "
'Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children -- last of all the babies. By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the saying, "Don't throw the baby out with the bath water."' This site has lots of such humorous stories. Go to:

[Dead link - removed]