Let's Speak English

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looks flushed and excited is believed to be ill and is sent to bed. When he looks mournful again they say he's recovered and he's allowed to get up.

In England, if any one's not very well, they say he's OFF-COLOUR. You often hear some one say "I'm feeling a little OFF-COLOUR today". That applies to the educated man. If you're a working man you say "I feel like 'ell". But if you 're in the Army, you haven't much time to feel OFF COLOUR or like 'ell. A British Tommy, when he writes home to his family, is always IN THE PINK. That means he's well and healthy. The idiom comes from the boxing ring. A boxer's colour should be rosy: his body is then IN THE PINK".condition .. So the Tommy always ends his letter "Hoping this finds you as it leaves me, IN THE PINK". And on the back of the envelope, he puts the secret sign 'S.W.K.' Now you might think this means 'Soldiers will kill'. It doesn't. It means 'sealed with a kiss'.

If you're interested in other English idioms I can recommend a little book called 'Everyday English Phrases' by Whitehead. There's one idiomatic phrase on each page with an explanation of its meaning and its origin. It's for advanced students only but if you want to improve your style in English it might help you. The name of the book is 'Everyday English Phrases' by J. S. Whitehead. It costs two shillings and sixpence, about a hundred and fifty mils in Palestine : and it is published by Longmans Green of London. You can order it through any local book shop.

In finishing my talk this evening I think you might be interested to know who are the other members of the Brighter English League. There are now 350 members. Half live in Jerusalem, seventy in Tel Aviv, and forty in Haifa. There are others at Nablus, Tiberias, Petah Tikva, Rishon le Zion, Rehovoth, Bethlehem, Ramallah, Benyamina, Natanya, Affula, Pardess Hanna; at Amman and es Salt in Trans-Jordan, at Baghdad and Kirkuk in Iraq, at Beirut, Aleppo and Kuneitra in Syria and even at Plovdiv in Bulgaria and Constanza in Rumania. Most seem, from their names, to be Jewish, and there are more men than women. Quite a number are students in secondary schools.

I'm sorry I can't reply personally to all the questions I've been asked in your letters. But I am very grateful for your suggestions many of which I'm using in future talks.


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