Column on "Lawtalk" Book

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Mon Mar 5 12:16:33 UTC 2012

In my latest column in the Yale Alumni Magazine, I discuss the sensational new book, Lawtalk: The Unknown Stories Behind Familiar Legal Expressions, by James Clapp, Elizabeth Thornburg, Marc Galanter and myself.  The column specifically addresses the origins of the terms "blue laws," "rule of thumb," and "shyster."  Credit is given to Joel Berson for his ADS-L-promulgated discovery of the earliest known citation for "blue laws."  I had also given credit to Gerald Cohen for his dissemination of a New York Historical Society librarian's discovery of the first use of "shyster," but that was edited out by the magazine.

Fred Shapiro
YALE BOOK OF QUOTATIONS (Yale University Press)

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list