fetchezlavache said:oh i don't understand... what does it mean please ?
The phrase writing on the wall (or sometimes handwriting on the wall) is an expression thats suggests future doom or misfortune, visible to almost anyone. For example, She saw the handwriting on the wall and left the company before it collapsed.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the expression originates from chapter 5 of the Old Testament Book of Daniel. The following excerpts are from the Revised Standard Version:
King Belshazzar made a great feast for a thousand of his lords and drank wine in front of the thousand...they drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and silver, of bronze, of iron, wood, and stone. Immediately the fingers of a man's hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall of the king's palace.
Further down in the same chapter, we learn that the writing was in Aramaic.
And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL and PARSIN. For more details go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Writing_on_the_wall
Artrella said:Yes!! The idiom is "The writing is on the wall"... now...what happens with the previous examples??
Artrella said:But Rayb, what's the difference between both expressions?
Garry says the examples correspond to my "The writing's on the wall" ...
so, what is the difference you find in both cases?
"Writing is on the wall" is always singular, never plural. The confusion arose because of a missing apostrophe in rayb's post. I checked all the songs and they also read--correctly--the writing's on the wall.rayb said:Apparently the examples proposed, by the way extremely interesting, are mainly for: "the writing's on the wall". Maybe the lyrics of these songs will bring you some hidden messages written somewhere on a wall :
jacinta said:Art, can you be more specific with your question? What is it that you don't understand?
The saying is "The writing on the wall" or "the writing is on the wall". It is never used in the plural "The writings on the wall", at least I've never heard it used.
Was that the confusion?
I disagree, Eric. I don't think the phrase requires two opinions of the outcome, just that the message is as yet implied but not stated. As in, "While the jury wept at the victim's mother's testimony, I looked around and saw that we were all thinking the same thing- 'the writing's on the wall.'"EricB said:... If everyone can see it, the phrase doesn't quite work.