Found to be lacking something one needs, especially money, as in Can you pay the check? I seem to be caught short. This idiom uses short in the sense of “lacking money,” a usage dating from the early 1500s.
What Are Mr. And Mrs. Short For?When it comes to Mr and Mrs the difference is pretty clear, but what about Miss Mrs Ms? Quick answer: Ask her what she prefers — Miss Mrs or Ms?
“Sir” And “Madam” Are Shorter Versions Of What Words?Let’s say you want to get the attention of a male clerk in the produce section of the grocery store. Would you say, “Excuse me sire, but could you please explain the difference between a yam and a sweet potato?” (For the answer to that question, read this.) Addressing a stranger as “sire” might raise an eyebrow. But if you said it, you wouldn’t necessarily …
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.