MAILBAG: Spitting or splitting?

Krissy of Norton Shores asks: "When referring to someone or something looking the same, what's the proper phrase? Is it 'spitting image' or 'splitting image'?"
Mark Brooky
Sep 5, 2012

ANSWER:

You're not going to like this, Krissy. That is, unless you like indecision.

After looking around a few websites, I've found it to be both ways.

It could be that someone looks so much like someone else that they were split from them. Or it could also be interpreted as though they look so much alike, one person spit the other out.

Phrases.org sites the phrase as meaning "the exact likeness."

I found a 2010 Chicago Tribune article about the very topic. The article quotes the proper saying as "the spit and image."

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Comments

Fly on the Wall

It's a contraction or speed slur of "Spirit and Image".

You're welcome.

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