By Rosario Mariani, http://www.europebychoice.com
“Okay, but it’ll cost you an arm and a leg”
In George Washington’s days, there were no cameras. One’s image was either sculpted or painted, and largely by the hands of Italian artists.
Some paintings of George Washington showed him standing behind a desk with one arm behind his back, while others showed both legs and both arms.
Prices charged by painters were not based on how many people were to be painted, but by how many limbs were to be painted. Therefore, painting arms and legs would cost the buyer more.
Hence the expression, “Okay, but it’ll cost you and arm and a leg,” or the equivalent Italian expression for this, “Ti costera’ un’occhio.”
Did you know?
Zero is the only number that cannot be represented by Roman numerals.
Rosario Mariani is the owner/CEO of Europe By Choice, which promotes travel to Italy and other select European countries. He has more than 40 years of experience in the travel industry, previously serving as Director of Italy Product for Italiatour and Club ABC Tours, and also in other positions with EuroFly, Alitalia and Air France.