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#1
Old 07-29-2003, 07:31 PM
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Location: 1060 W. Addison
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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)?
#2
Old 07-29-2003, 07:36 PM
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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.
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#3
Old 07-29-2003, 08:44 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: NoWA
Posts: 57,946
What Q.E.D. said.

(I always get to these late.)
#4
Old 07-29-2003, 09:31 PM
Graphite is a great
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Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Akron, Ohio
Posts: 25,860
Quote:
(I always get to these late.)
Ditto!
"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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