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Bosom buddies

Posted by Smokey Stover on November 14, 2008 at 15:06

In Reply to: Bosom buddies posted by Victoria S Dennis on November 14, 2008 at 07:59:

: : From where/when does the phrase "bosom buddies" originate?

: It's an updated American-English version of "bosom friend" which goes back to the 16th century (first usage cited 1590). At that time one of the meanings of "bosom" was "the breast considered as the seat of thoughts and feelings: hence 'inward thoughts'". Thus, a "bosom friend" was someone so dear and trusted that you would frankly "unbosom" yourself to him/her - i.e. reveal all your most private thoughts. (VSD)

Although I have no quarrel with a bosom friend as an intimate friend, the phrase "bosom buddies" is a bit too earthy to suggest "inward thoughts" and feelings. Bosom buddies, in yank-speak, are just close pals, intimate friends but not so intimate as to suggest anything Biblical or sentimental. But that's just my take on it.