An Arm and A Leg
These days we are living, many items we purchased in the past are now costing an arm and a leg. But where did the term "an arm and a leg" come from?
In George Washington's days, there were no cameras. One's image was either sculpted or painted. Some paintings of George Washington showed him standing behind a desk with one arm behind his back while others showed both legs and both arms. Prices charged by painters were not based on how many people were to be painted, but by how many limbs were to be painted. Arms and legs are 'limbs,' therefore painting them would cost the buyer more. Hence the expression, 'Okay, but it'll cost you an arm and a leg.' (Artists know hands and arms are more difficult to paint)
Our sheepskin slippers will not cost you an arm and a leg but will keep you warmer as the nights get colder; therefore, your electric or gas bill will not cost you an arm and a leg to heat your house.
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