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Extraordinary Origins Of Everyday Things Paperback – Sep 16 1987


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; REV edition (Sept. 16 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060964197
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060964191
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 3 x 23.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 658 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #136,017 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Paperback
I found this to be one of the most fascinating and interesting books I have ever read. Flip the book open to any page and learn the history of everyday things we take for granted.
How were Band-Aids invented? When toilet paper was first invented, why did so few people buy it? Who invented the razor blade, or ready-mixed paint? When were toilets invented? How were false teeth made during the civil war? What commonly available fluid did people use to brush their teeth?
Ever wonder where the expression "give the cold shoulder" came from? The custom of shaking hands? All of these mysteries and hundreds more are masterfully revealed by Panati.
I love to read a few passages before bed -- that's the beauty of this book. You can pick it up and put it down over and over again.
Well written, thoroughly researched, and told with wit and economy, this book is a great read for anyone with a curiousity about life, culture and civilization.
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Format: Paperback
I don't trust very much trivia books. There always seems to be another version for the same fact. Even one of the reviewers of this book take the time to explain HIS version about one of the facts of the book and I'm pretty sure some specialists could do the same for other facts. BUT the plain fact is THIS IS A VERY FUNNY READING, full of details and stories about the time of the fact under examination. So, even if the trivia itself may be wrong, still you learn a lot. And ignorance is blissful. I don't know anybody whose profesional career depepends upon knowing the difference between Asyrian empire and Accadian empire, as long as they are treated with some respect (not like some movies, which flips around the pages of some book and take the first name they come along, even if the choice made is absolutely impossible). History, at last, is not a question of accuracy, but one of good-faith and enjoyment. This book fills that purpose
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By puffinswan on Sept. 14 2001
Format: Paperback
If you enjoy trivia and unusual
facts, then Charles Panati's
Extraordinary Origins of
Everyday Things, is the perfect
book. I have read other trivia books and I can say without
hesitation that Mr. Panati produces the best of the genre.
Many trivia books list a dry and uninspired fact sheet.
Panati, however, avoids this common pitfall and instead
entertains us with unusual and well researched trivia about
the history or origin of many everyday items and customs.
His books are formatted into logical chapter groupings
that easily flow from one topic to another. The book
is a pleasure to read and it teaches you in a pain free
style, answering questions that until now you couldn't find
answers for! Panati's words will both enlighten and
enchant you.
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By A Customer on March 27 2001
Format: Paperback
This book contains much that is fascinating and useful. Unfortunately some misinformation has slipped past the editors (of my edition, at least). For example, it repeats the false rumour that the rhyme "Ring Around the Rosie" is about the Bubonic plague; actually the song originated in 19th century America and describes a ring dance. There are enough of these errors to cast doubt on the other "origins" in this book, entertaining though they might be.
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Format: Paperback
Step by step explanation how many of the things from the past came to be. It sits on the bookcase with it's dogged eared pages, ready to be used again and again for what ever information one of the family would like to know. Be it about an everyday items in the house, something heard on the TV, read in the newspaper or a book. This book hasn't missed. (Makes me wonder what will be in the second version.)
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By A Customer on July 6 1998
Format: Paperback
A great book for people interested in just about everything. Since the book is so diverse you are sure to find something for everyone. A wonderful choice if you need to get a gift for someone very hard to buy for. I've not met anyone who hasn't thoroughly enjoyed the book. Frankly, I think its a terrific "bathroom" or guestroom book.
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By A Customer on Feb. 5 2000
Format: Paperback
A supurb traveling or gift book, with excellent informative pieces of information which will please almost anyone. His other books are equally well written, but this is probably the best due to its diversity of information. This time, I'm getting three copies, since when it is lent out it rarly comes home!
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