A few days ago whilst watching a film I heard the phrase, ‘He was as happy as Larry’. I have heard this phrase used many times as I’m sure you have, and in fact have used it myself. The meaning of the phrase is of course obvious, it is spoken to convey that you are very happy.
Now for some reason, probably because I have too much time on my hands and I really need to get out more, I felt the urge to know who ‘Larry’ is/ was, so with the help of the best research tool ever, ‘Google’, this is what I found out.
The earliest recorded use of the phrase happy as Larry goes as far back as 1875. It was coined by a writer, G.L.Meredith. He had written:
“We would have been as happy as Larry if it wasn’t for the Rats”
So who is Larry?................................This is Larry.
Mr. Larry Foley 1847 – 1917
Larry Foley was an Australian bare knuckle boxing champion well before boxing was made legal in Australia. He was never defeated and is famous for the huge purse he won on his last fight before retiring at age 32. He went on to start his own gym where he trained other up and coming fighters. The phrase was used by a reporter from a New Zealand newspaper when reporting on this big fight. He wrote: “The crowd were as happy as Larry!”
And so the phrase was born.
See you next month, keep well and as happy as Larry.
Well you know I'm an Author, so you keep reading, and I will keep writing :)