Alan bean

Alan L(aVern) born 1932, U.S. astronaut.
Roy (“Judge”) 1825?–1903, U.S. frontiersman and justice of the peace: called himself “the law west of the Pecos.”.
any of various leguminous plants of the widely cultivated genus Phaseolus producing edible seeds in pods See French bean, lima bean, scarlet runner, string bean
any of several other leguminous plants that bear edible pods or seeds, such as the broad bean and soya bean
any of various other plants whose seeds are produced in pods or podlike fruits
the seed or pod of any of these plants
any of various beanlike seeds, such as coffee
(US & Canadian, slang) another word for head
(slang) cool beans, excellent; impressive
(slang) not have a bean, to be without money: I haven’t got a bean
(informal) full of beans

full of energy and vitality
(US) mistaken; erroneous

(informal) spill the beans, to disclose something confidential
(mainly US & Canadian, slang) (transitive) to hit (a person) on the head

Old English bean “bean, pea, legume,” from Proto-Germanic *bauno (cf. Old Norse baun, Middle Dutch bone, Dutch boon, Old High German bona, German Bohne), perhaps from a PIE reduplicated base *bha-bha- and related to Latin faba “bean.”

As a metaphor for “something of small value” it is attested from c.1300. Meaning “head” is U.S. baseball slang c.1905 (in bean-ball “a pitch thrown at the head”); thus slang verb bean meaning “to hit on the head,” attested from 1910.

The notion of lucky or magic beans in English folklore is from the exotic beans or large seeds that wash up occasionally in Cornwall and western Scotland, carried from the Caribbean or South America by the Gulf Stream. They were cherished, believed to ward off the evil eye and aid in childbirth.

Slang bean-counter “accountant” recorded by 1971. To not know beans (American English, 1933) is perhaps from the “of little worth” sense, but may have a connection to colloquial expression recorded around Somerset, to know how many beans make five “be a clever fellow.”

noun phrase

Something regarded as the most important element: the be-all and end-all of series finales

[1605; fr Shakespeare’s Macbeth, ”That but this blow Might be the be all, and the end all.”]

full of beans
not have a bean
not know beans
not worth a dime (bean)
spill the beans
tough break (beans)


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