# Square from Delaware, etc

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Fri Sep 5 16:06:10 UTC 2008

```At 9/5/2008 11:48 AM, George Thompson wrote:

>Having just moved, I can't put my hands on a quotation book;
>however, If I recall, the square peg/round hole image came from Jeremy Bentham.
>
>It seems to me that the usual way of referring tho this analogy is
>to say "he's a square peg in a round hole" (as opposed to "he's a
>round peg. . . ."  So, it's the square peg that doesn't fit in, and
>SG's suggestion that this is the root of why the unhip are squares
>rather than, say, pentagrams, is interesting.

On Google, the round peg is outweighed by only about 2 to 1.  And we
have an opinion from answers.com, at
"idioms: square peg in a round hole ... Also, round peg in a square hole."

But mathematics supports the greater oddity of the square.  "Hence
the circle covers more of the square than the square does the circle.
It's therefore better to be a round peg in a square hole than a
square peg in a round hole."  {That is, one fits in to alien
surroundings better as a round peg than as a square
peg.)  http://www.nzmaths.co.nz/PS/L6/Measurement/SquarePegs.aspx

Joel

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