Sliced Bread

Posted by ESC on January 07, 2004

In Reply to: Sliced Bread posted by Jonathan Kahan on January 07, 2004

: "The Greatest thing since sliced bread"

: Before sliced bread (around 1920s/1930s I think) what was the greatest thing?

: Thanks.

I'm not sure when stores began selling "light bread," as we called it. I would think that electric lights and indoor plumbing would be pretty great but I don't know when they were widely available.

"It's the greatest thing since sliced bread -- What a brilliant idea! What a fine thing! Said of any innovation more important than a bread slicer. Often used sarcastically. The expression originated in the mid-twentieth century. Chinese checkers, chopped liver, packaged bread, swinging doors, chewing gum, the hula hoop, or the hamburger may replace (the term) 'sliced bread' (in the expression)..." For example, "the greatest thing since the hula hoop." Random House Dictionary of Popular Proverbs and Sayings by Gregory Y. Titelman (Random House, New York, 1996).