Friday, April 27, 2012

Day 324 ~ "X" Marks the Spot!

How many times have you heard the saying "X marks the spot?  Or have you even heard it?  (for my younger readers, lol)

Funny... I took the time out to see if I could find its true origin.  I figured it would be a piece of cake... boy was I surprised!

I came across some many sites with their own opinions.

Some definitions expressed that it was because you have to mark an "X" a box on an application or form that one is filling out; yet another shared that "earliest days of newspaper photography where the scene of the crime would be shown with an X to mark where the deed was done".

All of this imaybe true, however none of them are the actual origin.  I think that the closest I came to its origin, was that this idiom is found in the book Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, published in 1883.  

This idiom was once again revived in 1942 with the movie X Marks the Spot starring  Damian O'FlynnHelen Parrish and Dick Purcell.  (who?)

Although I feel that the actual verbiage may have come from this book, the usage of the "X" being used is way, WAY older than this.  Especially since it used in our first writings. 

I know that centuries ago when illiteracy was more common than literacy itself, people would sign contracts and papers with a big "X".  With a witness of course.  This practice is still used now-a-days.  Hard to believe huh?  Yes... there still is illiteracy in the world.

This saying or idiom, as its called, has been around as long as I can remember... and I have established in this post that it's been around even longer than that.

I have often repented speaking, but never of holding my tongue.
You're not supposed to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong no matter who does it or who says it.
~ Malcom X

Blogging A to Z Challenge April 2012... What will "Y" bring us tomorrow?


41 days to go...  really?

... for a, l & c.  You are my sunshine(s).  

Images are courtesy of google or Bing images.  Some images maybe labeled property of Carla Barila Karam and of this blog, Taking Back My Life ~ Making It My Own.  U.S Copyright laws apply.  © 2012


Czjai Reyes-Ocampo said...

Oh my, two letters to go! :)

leigh said...

I like how you did some research on this! X certainly marks the spot - wish I found a treasure map!
Two letters to go! we are almost done :)

Kristina said...

I really hope no one is too young to know what that means! ;) Then i'd just feel old! :) Fun post!!

Columba Lisa Smith said...

What a fascinating post! I'm always interested in the development of language. It really is a living thing! Blessings,

Anonymous said...

Love these already at X. Thanks for sharing.

Barbara said...

One thing is for sure, when x marks the spot you are sure to get there straight as an arrow flies and be pleased as punch about it. - Barbara
Life & Faith in Caneyhead

KarenG said...

I can hardly believe we are nearly done! X marks the spot of nearly finishing with the Challenge :)

Mama luvs Saving said...

Its funny how we say things and we never REALLY know where they came from =) said...

I love the quote by Xenocrates--I could stand to remember it at times! I have always assumed that the saying referred to a pirate's map--not even sure why. Thanks for a fun post!