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Posted by Baceseras on August 25, 2010 at 12:57

In Reply to: Legs posted by Victoria S Dennis on August 25, 2010 at 12:24:

: : Where does the expression that something "has legs," meaning an idea or project that is practicable, come from? I have the idea that it is an expression of the movie industry, but I don't know.

: Originally in the late 19th century it was racing slang; a fast horse or greyhound was said to "have legs". Obviously a fast racing greyhound or horse is likely to win races, so the phrase was employed by the communications media with the sense "have the potential for success". (VSD)

[The currency of the phrase is partly traceable to Variety, the show-biz paper, which at least from the late 1940s on would declare in its reviews whether or not a movie "had legs," that is, whether it was apt to continue drawing a good audience past its opening week. Variety argot was at first inside stuff, common only to show people talking amongst themselves; then some time after 1970 the circle widened as others took up the paper's coinages to add color to their talk or writing. - Baceseras.]