I pulled a hamstring last night. That’ll teach me to play football with boys that are much bigger and stronger than me. I do translations for a fitness magazine and I had often wondered where the "ham" in "hamstring" comes from, and while I was doing a search on the Internet to work out how to look after my poor traumatised muscle (the answer is RICE: rest, ice, compress, elevate), I came across the etymology of the word. It comes from ME hamme, OE hamm (bend of the knee) and ME string, streng, OE streng, akin to Latin stringere (to bind). Sums it up nicely, really.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some stretching to do.
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