phrases, sayings, idioms and expressions at

Sweating Bullets

Posted by Gary Martin on June 07, 2000

In Reply to: Sweating Bullets posted by ESC on June 02, 2000

: : My guess is that the phrase "Sweating Bullets" is simply a colourful metaphor to illustrate the degree of stress it would take to sweat so much.

: : Can anyone tell me more about this phrase? When and where did it originate?

: : Thank you. This is such an interesting forum!

: : Daniel

: I couldn't find this phrase anywhere. But it occurred to me that maybe this term came from cartooning. You know, when the character has sweat drops (or bullets) coming off him or her. Who knows a cartoonist we can ask?

: Or maybe it's linked to another, more vulgar phrase. Sweating bullets and s#*ting nails. Kind of a hardware theme. Just a thought!

I think this originated in the First World War. My father also used to used 'sweating tin hats'. Sweating was the the 'in polite company' word: otherwise it was s h i tting.