“Red Herring” – how did the saying originate?


Today’s phrase is of more common use and again we have Tony Wootton and Gwen Zanzottera to thank for their contribution. I got the book, “By Hook or By Crook” in Stratford-upon-Avon (the birthplace of William Shakespeare) when I went visiting there.

“RED HERRING”

Although more commonly used today in popular murder mysteries, the saying does in fact goes back to fox hunting.

A red herring was a bloater (a herring partially dried in smoke) and this was often dragged across the trail of a fox to confuse the pursuing hounds. They would follow the false trail – the red herring.

Well, here you are – short and sweet how it all originated.

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