[Ads-l] turn on a dime (1911), stop on a dime (1921)

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Wed Sep 8 16:47:36 EDT 2021


Here is another coin employed to measure turning radius in 1902.

Date: January 23, 1902
Newspaper: The Burlington Free Press
Newspaper Location: Burlington, Vermont
Article: Hope Ahead For The Horse
Author: Rene Bache
Quote Page 2, Column 4
Database: Newspapers.com

https://www.newspapers.com/image/197088662/?terms=ideal

[Begin excerpt]
An ideal polo pony has "quarters like a cart-horse," and should have
such control of himself as to be able to "turn on a dollar."
[End excerpt]

Garson

On Wed, Sep 8, 2021 at 3:19 PM Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> The OED entry for "dime" hasn't been updated with the idiom "(turn/stop) on
> a dime," though Oxford Dictionaries has it ("used to refer to a maneuver
> that can be performed by a moving vehicle or person within a small area or
> short distance").
>
> HDAS has an earlier expression, "turn on a five-cent piece," from 1881. The
> same quote appears in newspaper databases as early as Oct. 17, 1879,
> excerpted from an article by A.A. Hayes, Jr. in the Nov. 1879 issue of
> Harper's. ("Turn on a ten-cent piece" shows up starting in 1891.)
>
> https://www.newspapers.com/clip/84969173/turns-on-a-five-cent-piece/
>
> HDAS has "turn on a dime" from 1918 but doesn't have "stop on a dime."
>
> * turn on a dime (1911)
>
> ---
> https://www.newspapers.com/clip/84966683/turn-on-a-dime/
> Galveston (Texas) Daily News, Mar. 18, 1911, p. 3, col. 6
> While the ship was being turned and docked her fast little steam launch
> darted about doing its share of the task like something with human
> Intelligence. It was a fast little craft and could almost turn on a dime in
> a jiffy.
> ---
> https://www.newspapers.com/clip/84966716/turn-on-a-dime/
> Washington Post, May 28, 1911, Sporting Section, p. 4, col. 7
> The only difference in equipment is in the shoes, the American ponies
> wearing light plates with a flange on the outer rim and the English ponies
> having the flange on the inside of the shoe, which in their opinion is the
> part of the foot most needing a bracing when a pony turns "on a dime."
> ---
>
> * stop on a dime (1921)
>
> ---
> https://www.newspapers.com/clip/84965918/you-can-stop-it-on-a-dime/
> Indianapolis News, Jan. 27, 1921, p. 19 (advt.)
> The New Design 1921 Franklin [...]
> Increased leverage makes transmission footbrake 30% powerful. You can stop
> it on a dime.
> ---
> https://www.newspapers.com/clip/84966009/stop-on-a-dime/
> Herald and Review, Decatur, Ill., Mar. 25, 1921, p. 6, col. 2
> They [sc. buses] will get you down town a little quicker than the street
> cars, sometimes, and often furnish you with many thrills enroute by
> stunting in front of an 18 ton street car that cannot stop on a dime, no
> matter how careful the operator, or ignoring the watchman's warning at the
> railroad crossing.
> ---
> https://www.newspapers.com/clip/84966090/stop-on-a-dime/
> South Bend (Ind.) Tribune, May 2, 1922, p. 2, col. 6
> It is true that "flivvers" can stop on a dime but some drivers forget that
> they sometimes back up.
> ---
>
> --bgz
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

------------------------------------------------------------
The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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