Long and short
Posted by Masakim on October 14, 2001
In Reply to: Long and short posted by Ellen on October 14, 2001
: Where does the phrase "The Long and Short of It" originate - I started to think about it after living with 3 dachshunds. I'd like more history.
Long and the Short of it, The In sum; the heart of the matter.
If you have told it "long" and told it "short," you have surely
told it all. Sometimes it was reversed: "the short and yhe long
of it." Robert Manning of Brunne wrote in his _Langtorft's Chronicle_
: "To say longly or schorte, alle [that] arms bare."
From The Dictionary of Cliches by James Rogers
long and short of it, the
The substance or gist of something, as in _The first page of this report will give you the long and short of it_. This expression, originally stated as _the short and long of it_, dates from about 1500, the present order being established by the end of the 1600s.
From The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer