Date: Wed, 20 Jul 1994 15:22:00 +1200


Subject: Re: "Butter wouldn't melt in his mouth."

Butter wouldn't melt...

Note it is so well-known it is often shortened - long live Zipf :-)

I have been familiar with Butter wouldn't melt in his mouth all my life

and would not regard it as exceptional in the least in the forms of English

I'm familiar with - that of Scotland, England and New Zealand. For some

reason I think of it as a typically Irish expression. To me it simply indicates

apparent innocence without a very strong suggestion that the reverse is the

case. Said of a boy who may be naughty at times perhaps but is on his good

behaviour. It may be connected with butter up.

George Halliday