Posted by ESC on April 09, 2007
In Reply to: Walk the line posted by david on March 29, 2007
: The term 'walk the line' was not originated by Johnny Cash.
: The term refers to convict exercise yards (circa 1700's to 1920's).
: The prisoners had to walk around in a wide circle on a yellow (sometimes white) line painted on the ground for as long as exercise time permitted.
: If any prisoner went to far astray from the line he was punished.
: I would assume Johnny cash used this term in reference to his relationship in the song but I can assure you the saying predates the song by many, many years.
: The terms 'walk the line' and 'walking the line' can be found in Port Arthur (a tasmanian convict prison) documents dating back to 1874.
: Just wanted to clarify. Best, David