Black Friday, traditions and English idioms about shopping

    As soon as the end of November comes, retailers begin to bomb consumers with advertising on sales and huge discounts. Black Friday became popular in Russian-speaking countries only 10 years ago, but many already simply cannot imagine their shopping without it.

    Today we will talk about Black Friday and English idioms associated with shopping. Record and use. But first, some interesting things.

    Black Friday: what is it

    Black Friday is called the first Friday after Thanksgiving, which falls between November 23 and 29.

    Of course, Thanksgiving is an exclusively American holiday, which reflects some of their historical events, but many other countries picked up Black Friday celebrations.

    There are several versions of the origin of the name "Black Friday". Some of them are associated with the negative - the “black”, while others - quite the opposite. We will consider two main versions.

    First versionsays that “Black Friday” is associated with the economic collapse of the gold market in 1869. The US authorities decided to fight the monopoly of the business of gold and, in fact, brought down the market, throwing a large amount of gold on it. The price of the precious metal in one day decreased several times, so the day was called “Black Friday”.

    In the second version, everything is a little more interesting. It is not known who first came up with the idea of ​​making big discounts on goods after Thanksgiving, but retailers quickly realized that this is a great way to make a profit and clear warehouses from stale goods.

    But why "black"? It's all about the features of the accounting of the time. About 150 years ago, profits in the internal documents of companies were marked in black, and expenses - in red. After such sales, the owners saw that there was more revenue than expenses. Moreover, in one day the company could receive a monthly profit. Due to this, the idiom “to be in black” appeared , which means “to get profit or profit” . And Friday turned into a “black one” because it brought in big profits.

    It is also quite possible that both versions influenced the appearance of that Black Friday, which we know and love today. And the appearance of an interesting idiom. On the topic of shopping such idioms enough, so now we will analyze with you the most common and, of course, talk about their values.

    English idioms about shopping

    Americans love to buy things, but the British are just a bit behind them. That is why in English there are a lot of interesting phrases that describe the shopping process.

    To buy something for a song
    (literally: buy something for a song)

    And no, Americans are not considered to be strong music connoisseurs who are ready to sell products for songs. But getting something for free or cheap is always welcome.

    To buy something for a song - buy something cheap


    You wouldn't believe! I've bought a new laptop just for a song!
    You will not believe! I bought a new laptop just for nothing!

    White sale
    (literally: white sale)

    “Are you a racist, my friend? What is it, sales only for whites? ”Those who are not familiar with this idiom may well have a similar impression. But in fact, everything is much simpler. After all, the phrase displays only ish sale of linen. The linen was only white before, do you guess?

    White sale - sale of bed linen


    There were so many cute pillowcases at the yesterday's white sale.
    There were so many pretty pillowcases at yesterday's sale of bed linen.

    By the way, such sales are quite common for the USA, and they are held almost every month. But for some reason they did not take root in the post-Soviet space.

    Hard sell A
    (literally: heavy selling)

    There is a separate category of consultants, who runs the store for you on his heels, describing the charms of certain goods and literally vsuchivaya their hands, implying that here right now to go to the cashier and pay. Such consultants enrage everyone, and a separate idiom was invented for the designation of the work.

    When a consultant rigidly imposes the purchase of goods, even those that you do not need - this is a hard sale. And for such “employees of the month” a separate cauldron in hell was prepared.

    Hard sell - buy sell


    I don't like this shop because of their hard sells.
    I do not like this store because they are selling goods.

    Under the hammer
    (literally: under the hammer)

    Here everything is a little more interesting than it seems at first glance. Nobody is going to destroy the goods, if no one suddenly buys them. And even the opposite - many buyers claim them at once. After all, we are talking about goods that are sold at auctions - during the bidding, the lot is, as it were, “under the hammer”, with the help of which the sale is conducted.

    Under the hammer - by auction or by auction


    The painting was gone for 100,000 dollars.
    The painting was sold at auction for $ 100,000.

    Sell ​​someone a bill of goods
    (literally: to sell a sales receipt)

    Many people believe that this idiom means “to skimp well”. But its real meaning is just the opposite. After all, when you "sell a sales receipt," it just means that you have been deceived.

    Sell ​​someone a bill of goods - fool someone


    Just imagine, he sold me a bill of goods!
    Imagine, he deceived me!

    Not buy something
    (Literally: do not buy something)

    If you add the particle “to” to the phrase, it will be translated literally. And without it, the meaning changes drastically. And that means she "does not buy into something." Including the "super-beneficial offer" and a 70% discount on goods that are not needed at all.


    The shop assistant had an insurance, but I didn't buy it.
    The consultant suggested that I get additional insurance, but I didn’t buy it.

    Not buy something - do not buy into something.

    Sell ​​like hotcakes
    (literally: sell like hot pancakes)

    Despite the literal translation, the meaning of the phrase is very easy to understand - the product scatters like hot cakes. True, why in the English version they turned into "pancakes" is not clear.

    Sell ​​like hotcakes - sold like hot cakes


    Wow! This ties sell like hotcakes.
    Wow! These ties scatter like hot cakes.

    Shopping is an important part of British and American culture. Many interesting moments are connected with it - both historical and linguistic. And sometimes they just confuse.

    But if you sort it out a bit, then everything falls into place. The main thing is to remember the strangest idioms. Fortunately, there are very few, right? So learn English and go shopping with pleasure.

    PS Yes, yes, we also spend Black Friday in EnglishDom. And even celebrate Thanksgiving. Ready for the best discounts of the season? Then click on the banner above or click on the link .

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