Have you ever searched all around your house looking for something? Perhaps you lost your keys or your wallet. Did you turn over the entire house? Did you look in every nook and cranny?
Does your house even have a nook? And a cranny?
I am not sure if mine does, because I don’t know what those words mean. But that changes today…
What Are Nooks and Crannies?
Wow. Nooks and crannies are old. Especially nooks.
Nook, which refer to “an out-of-the-way corner” have been round since the mid-1300s. Crannies aren’t quite as old, but the word, which has meant “a crack or crevice” date back to around 1440.
So how did two things that didn’t grow up in the same era end up together (that is known as the Catherine Zeta-Jones / Michael Douglas question)? We have a man by the name of James Cririe to thank for that.
In 1803 Cririe published Scottish Scenery, Or, Sketches in Verse, Descriptive of Scenes Chiefly in the Highlands of Scotland : Accompanied with Notes and Illustrations : and Ornamented with Engravings by W. Byrne from Views Painted by G. Walker (yes, that is the full title), where he said:
Of all the words in that quote, I am surprised “nook and cranny” was the one that became a famous saying? My money would have been on “the dread artillery of God.”