Q:

What is the origin of the "Liar, liar pants on fire" rhyme?

A:

One explanation for the origin of the "Liar, liar pants on fire" rhyme involves the curiosity of a young country boy who stole a cigar from his daddy's smoke box and hid in the tool shed to secretly mimic his father. After the boy lit the cigar, his dad smelled the potent smoke and followed its trail over crunchy leaves to the tool shed.

When the lad heard his father's footsteps, he snuffed the burning cigar as best he could and stuffed it into his back pants pocket. The father opened the shed door and barked at his son to tell the truth about what he'd done. The youngster feigned innocence, saying he was looking for a hook to go fishing with a friend at a promising fishing spot nearby. The cigar in his pocket suddenly sparked into flame. The father spotted the smoke and yelled, "Liar, liar, pants on fire!" Then he swiftly turned the boy over his knee and whacked his behind, extinguishing the danger. Another possible origin for "Liar, liar pants on fire" is that it was derived from a poem written in 1810 by William Blake, titled "The Liar." The phrase is often used as a taunt on political blogs.

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the "Jack Sprat" nursery rhyme?

    A:

    "Jack Sprat" is a traditional English nursery rhyme whose main verse says, "Jack Sprat could eat no fat. His wife could eat no lean. And so between them both, you see, they licked the platter clean." Though it was likely sung by children long before, "Jack Sprat" was first published around 1765 in the compilation "Mother Goose's Melody."

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the difference between a myth, a legend and a folktale?

    A:

    A myth is a traditional story that usually describes the origin of a person or place; folklore is a collection of fictional stories involving people or animals; and a legend is a story that claims to be rooted in history, but it does not have any legitimate verification. Although the terms are often used interchangeably, they are each unique in subtle ways.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a pathological liar?

    A:

    A pathological liar is a person who compulsively lies for personal gain and doesn't feel guilt or remorse when hurting other people. Pathological liars are considered to be sociopaths, meaning they have a personality disorder in which there is an absence of conscience and a sense of right and wrong.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a chronic liar?

    A:

    A "chronic" liar is one who habitually tells lies, usually in a "fantastical" or "dazzling" way, with the individual telling lies often adding to past lies. For various reasons, a chronic liar cannot tell the truth.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore