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Bric-à-brac

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Odds and ends of curiosities. In French, a marchand de bric-à-brac is a seller of rubbish, as old nails, old screws, old hinges, and other odds and ends of small value; but we employ the phrase for odds and ends of vertu. (Bricoler in archaic French means Faire toute espèce de metier, to be Jack of all trades. Brac is the ricochet of bric, as fiddle-faddle and scores of other double words in English.)

“A man with a passion for bric-a-brac is always stumbling over antique bronzes, intaglios, mosaics, and daggers of the time of Benvenuto Cellini.”—Aldrich: Miss Mehetable’s Son, chap. ii.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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Brentford
Bressommer
Bretwalda (ruler of Britain)
Brevet Rank
Breviary
Brew
Brewer
Briareos or Ægeon
Briar-root Pipe
Briboci
Bric-à-brac
Brick
Brick-and-mortar Franchise
Brickdusts
Brick-tea
Bride
Bride Cake
Bride or Wedding Favours
Bride of Abydos
Bride of Lammermoor
Bride of the Sea