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I know the meaning, just want to know the origin, Thanks!:-)
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I couldn't find a direct etymology, but this comment, if not apocryphal, is suggestive:

The Butcher's Bill That's what Ulysses S. Grant -- a tanner's son who knew his business -- used to call it

Hi!

Could you please explain the meaning of that phrase? I've never heard it before.

Lucrezia
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it means "death toll"

eg: a steep bucher's bill = a high death toll

btw: Did I get it?
It's from people being butchered/slaughtered in wars, and the cost (bill - number of casualties) being shown to those sending them there.
Thanks!

I think it's a figure of speech.

"a butcher" is like "a war", and "a bill" is like "a cost or casualties"

Just my 2 cents;-)
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its a (simily)/not sure of spelling /. if that answers any questions. a butcher" is like "a war", and "a bill" is like "a cost or casualties"

raiden005
I've heard that this term was first used by Admiral Nelson when, after battles, he would ask his aides, "What's the butcher's bill?", meaning how many lost and wounded.
This expression being "a la Lord Nelson" is indeed mentioned in several references.

It seems to be sailors' speak.
Not sure if Nelson was the first to have used it, but he might have been.
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