Origin of barleycorn
Examples from the Web for barleycorn
Historical Examples of barleycorn
Few of them bore the somatic signs of intimacy with Mr. Barleycorn.Idling in Italy
The lowest dimension, as in our own table of linear measure, was the Barleycorn.The Rand-McNally Bible Atlas
Jesse L. Hurlbut
"Thank you," said the woman; and she gave the fairy twelve shillings, which was the price of the barleycorn.Hans Andersen's Fairy Tales
Hans Christian Andersen
A small inflamed tumour, or boil, at the edge of the eyelid, somewhat resembling a barleycorn.Cooley's Practical Receipts, Volume II
The histology of the barleycorn is best studied by the examination of sections under the microscope.
late 14c., from barley + corn (n.). Perhaps to distinguish the barley plant or the grain from its products. In Britain and U.S., the grain is used mainly to prepare liquor, hence personification as John Barleycorn (1620) in popular ballad, and many now-obsolete figures of speech, e.g. to wear a barley cap (16c.) "to be drunk."