Monday, May 07, 2007

A digression on an expression

The expression “keeping up with the Joneses” has an unlikely origin. It is said to have first been used in reference to American novelist Edith Wharton’s great-aunts Mary and Rebecca Jones, who horrified the rest of their austere society by building a mansion in uptown Manhattan. So next time you use that expression in reference to your neighbour’s new patio furniture, think of what those poor New Yorkers were up against.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That was really interesting. Wharton's novels often feature a "keeping up with the joneses" motif.