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Old 07-29-2003, 06:31 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: 1060 W. Addison
Posts: 325
Why do "top dollar" and "bottom dollar" mean the same thing?

Q: How much did that security system cost?
A: We paid top dollar for it.

Q: Will it be sunny tomorrow?
A: You can bet your bottom dollar.

In the above two examples, and in general, "top dollar" and "bottom dollar" mean the same thing: lots of money. Why? Is there any similar phrase that is used to mean the opposite (not much money)?
Old 07-29-2003, 06:36 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 22,536
No, they don't. "Top dollar" means the highest price, or most expensive". "Bottom dollar" means your last dollar; betting your bottom dollar means you're betting on such a sure thing that you're willing to risk your last dollar on it.
SnUgGLypuPpY -- TakE BaCk tHe PiT!
Old 07-29-2003, 07:44 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: NoWA
Posts: 59,088
What Q.E.D. said.

(I always get to these late.)
Old 07-29-2003, 08:31 PM
Graphite is a great
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Akron, Ohio
Posts: 26,202
(I always get to these late.)
"Bottom dollar" was used to mean your "last" one from the middle of the 1800's.

"Top dollar" is only from the mid-20th Century as far as I can find.

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