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miss piggy2

94 months ago

what does 'salt of the earth' mean?

hi there,
i have heard this being said but dont know what it is supposed to mean if anyone can help me out?


  94 months ago
Salt was the most valuable thing around, it's necessary for our survival, and even the word salary comes from the word for salt. Salt of the earth means that the person is beyond value and a necessary part of life. Or it's just the backchat people have to grease the egos of someone who outranks them.


  94 months ago
I always thought that it meant down to earth :)


  94 months ago
It means reliable and decent, as Dianne says. It appears in the bible, Matthew 5:13: "Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men." But presumably it was in common use before this translation of the bible, otherwise people wouldn't have understood it.
It does seem strange that it has such a positive meaning in this phrase when adding salt to a field actually prevents things from growing and was a tactic used in ancient times to ruin an enemy's farmland and cause starvation.

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