July 23, 2007


Eavesdrop- To listen secretly to the private conversation of others.

An eave is the edge of a roof which usually projects beyond the side of the building to offer weather protection. In Old English, eavesdrop (or eavesdrip) referred to the ground of the house on which water falls from the eaves. By the 15th century, the word eavesdropper came to mean someone who stood within the eavesdrop of a house to overhear what is going on inside. This lead to the verb eavesdrop and is first recorded in the seventeenth century.

Sources: The Merriam-Webster Book of Word Histories, www.answers.com
Pic: Painting by William Powell Frith.


AlterinG Abhishek said...


its always great to be here!!
to collect the hidden anec-dontes and wisdon!!

though no one ever replies back to my comments

666 said...

@abhishek: hey..your comments are most welcome and we are honestly sorry if you ever felt left out. Keep visiting and apologies once again

@moi: excellant post. was not aware of eavesdropping. That apart has the newfound summer listlessness driven you to such satisfying avocations, apart from 'fuelling' bachelor minds:-)

And I have my deepest regards for William Powell Frith. He depicted a woman eavesdropping haha!

Moi said...

AA : we don't reply to your comments??? i am sorry, if that's how u feel...i thought i always replied to anyone who commented on my posts..... keep coming and i promise we'll reply ALWAYS. :)

666: u don't need moi to fuel bachelor minds....they are dynamite themselves! and i liked the painting for its aesthetic value tho' I was aware some of the male readers would very predictably notice the "woman" eavesdropping and some will draw comparisons between Eve and eave. Am glad, u did not prove me wrong. :)

Radha said...

I was one of those who assumed there was some connection between Eve & Eave...great post moi :)

AlterinG Abhishek said...

@ 666:

@ Moi:

just like radha.. even I thought there is a connection between eve he eveasdrop
infact i thot its evesdrop!!

Moi said...

Radha and AA : awlright, let me admit it ....so did i ..till i notices the "a" in eaves and went looking for it :)

Moi said...

* noticed ....OOPs!!!

yogsma said...

Deewaron ke bhi kaan hote hain ..does it also come from eavesdrop? :-))...just kidding..amazing colloquial word.

666 said...

yogsma .. i am fascinated by Indian superstitions and sayings. Have tried to find origins but never chanced on one.. 'Kaali billi rasta kaat gayee' then 'peepal ke ped pe bhooth rehta hain'. Hinduism is a cornucopia of amazing beliefs and ideologies.