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Clouds of glory

Posted by Henry on June 25, 2004

In Reply to: Head in the clouds posted by ESC on June 24, 2004

: : : : I have read a small amount of information from an old archive on this site regarding the phrase "cloud 9". My question for anyone who may know, is, does cloud 9 infer a state of euphoria as was my understanding, or can it also mean cluelessness?

: : : I go for euphoria!

: : "On cloud nine" is definitely euphoric.
: : Listen to the Temptations.

: There is another "cloud expression" that people probably confuse with Cloud Nine:

: HEAD IN THE CLOUDS -- "Abstracted; absent-minded. It used to be 'head in the air,' but that apparently didn't convey the notion adequately and the head had to be extended all the way to the clouds. 'Trawl' gave a sharp example of the characterization in 1903: 'The Laureate crost over the lawn with the dreamy head-in-air gait that was known through five parishes round.'" From "Dictionary of Cliches" by James Rogers (Ballantine Books, New York, 1985).

Trailing clouds of glory - I think this means with a high reputation. I seem to remember it from Just William by Richmal Crompton. It may originally come from

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From God, who is our home: