Volume 2. Issue 2.
What was said? Have you heard of “knee-high to a grasshopper?”
Did someone really say that? Yes, when discussing my idiom newsletter at a colleague’s farewell party, a Partner asked me if I knew of that idiom… which I naturally did not.
What does it mean? Two meanings: 1) To be very young 2) Very short
Used in context :
2) You will need a ladder… you are just about knee-high to a grasshopper!
Originally recorded in 1814 as knee-high to a toad, this American Idiom has taken many forms… knee-high to a frog, bumblebee, splinter, mosquito, jackrabbit and…grasshopper.
In the Democratic Review in 1851 it was said “You pretend to be my daddies; some of you who are not knee-high to a grasshopper!
Among the >17k species of grasshoppers, reaching knee-high to a grasshopper would mean that a person is roughly less than an inch tall… that’s pretty short.
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