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Waxing wroth

Posted by R. Berg on February 20, 2007

In Reply to: Waxing roth posted by Bob on February 20, 2007

: : Is there such a phrase as "waxing roth" --- meaning, I think, to be very upset or mad?

: : I recall that phrase was included in a Marx Brothers movie, the one where Groucho is president of a university. He's in his office and in comes his secretary; the secretary reminds him that an important visitor has been waiting very long to see Groucho and that the latter has kept the visitor waiting.

: : The secretary says, "(the visitor) is so upset at being kept waiting -- he's waxing roth." Groucho, as only he could do, quips, "Well tell him to wax someone else!"

: You were close. It's spelled wroth.

For your further enlightenment: "Waxing" means "becoming" or "growing," as in "a waxing moon," one that (apparently) gets bigger. "Wroth" is an archaic word for "wrathful." ~rb