"That's the ticket (for soup)!" (1828)

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Thu Jul 8 02:47:35 UTC 2004

THAT'S THE TICKET--31,000 Google hits, 53,600 Google Groups hits
_That's the ticket_
_Kerry picks Sen. John Edwards as his running mate_
--AM NEW YORK, 7 July 2004, pg. 1 headline.
   A NEW YORK POST "exclusive" yesterday was Dick Gephart as the Veep 
selection.  Oops!
   Jon Lovitz popularized "that's the ticket!" on Saturday Night Live in the 
late 1980s.  Hoever, its a much, much older term.
   Does it come for the French "etiquette"?  This sound like a false 
   Does it come from "that the ticket for soup"?  Possibly.
   I'm at home right now and away from the databases Literature Online, 
American Periodical Series Online, Eighteenth Century Collections Online, and 
Accessible Archives.  I expect that Early American Newspapers will have "that's the 
ticket," when that database is released soon (in, uh, the second quarter of 
(PROQUEST HISTORICAL NEWSPAPERS) ("that's the ticket" and "slang" or 
A.K.. New York Times (1857-Current file). New York, N.Y.: Nov 13, 1904. p. 
SMA2 (1 page) 
The Washington Post (1877-1954). Washington, D.C.: Aug 24, 1913. p. MT5 (1 
      _"THAT'S THE TICKET."_
   "That's the ticket," an expression which signifies "that's all right," is 
derived from the French etiquette, meaning that which is good form.
   Strangely enough the word etiquette is in itself derived from ticket.  The 
rules and regulations for ladies and gentlemen at court were written or 
printed on pieces of cards, called tickets (or etiquettes in French) and from this 
came the word etiquette, meaning proper conduct for all persons.
    2.  HOW IT STARTED; "That's the Ticket!" 
JEAN NEWTON. Los Angeles Times (1886-Current File). Los Angeles, Calif.: Jan 
7, 1924. p. A4 (1 page):
   This is a favorite manner, in rough-and-ready company, of daying "That's 
just right--that's the proper way."  So typical of what Europeans would  dub 
American slang, it is to the French language that we must go for its origin!
   "That's the ticket" is a corruption of the French "C'est L'etiquette," 
which has the same meaning of "that is the proper way."  The play is on the 
French word "etiquette," which means "ticket" or "label" as well as etiquette.  In 
fact, the first is its primary meaning:
   Pronounced quickly, it is easily comprehensible how "C'est l'etiquette" 
should have been corrupted by slang-loving visitors like doughboys, for 
instance, into "That's the ticket," in which form it has found its way to these 
_that's the ticket_ phr. [mid-19C+] just what it wanted, the ideal thing; 
occas. as _that's the ticket for soup_.  [the "soup"  ref. stems from the cards 
given out to beggars entitling them to a free meal at a soup kitchen]
1856 Punch XXXI. 194 The old ‘Stand and deliver!’ 's all rot; Three to one; 
hit behind; with a wipe round the jowl, boys, That's the ticketand Vive la 
Garotte!..Let them cly-fake, we'll tip the Garotte.
  1856 ‘C. BEDE’ Tales Coll. Life i. 19 That's the ticket! that will just 
land me in time for Gates.
    9. slang.    a. The correct thing; what is wanted, expected, or 
fashionable; esp. in phr. that's the ticket.
  Perh. from 8; or, as some have suggested, from the winning ticket in a 
  1838 HALIBURTON Clockm. Ser. II. xxi. 323 They ought to be hanged, sir, (
that's the ticket, and he'd whop the leader). 1843 E. FITZGERALD Lett. (1889) I. 
117, I fancy that moderately high hills (like these) are the ticket. 1847 
Ibid. 179 This [idealizing of portraits] is all wrong. Truth is the ticket. 1854 
THACKERAY Newcomes vii, Somehow she's notshe's not the ticket. 1866 
Routledge's Ev. Boy's Ann. 411 That's the ticket! That's the winning game.

 Delaware Weekly Advertiser And Farmers Journal     Thursday, September 04, 
1828 Wilmington, Delaware     
...rifjht now." Paddy did so. "THAT'S THE TICKET for said bis monitor; "Now 
mind.....of THE Revolution who are entitled to THE benefits oi THE 
abovementioned act.. 
Pg. 4, col. 1:
(Titled "SCIENCE OF BRITISH FANCY, From a late London Paper."--ed.)
"That's the ticket for soup," said his monitor;... 

More information about the Ads-l mailing list