Are you worth your salt?


Salt (sal) you may know. First, some history.

Many moons ago (hace muchas lunas), in the Roman Empire, soldiers were paid a “salarium” (nowadays, the derived word is salary), meaning salt money. This meant that the money could be used to buy salt and other things. Some historians moot that the soldiers were paid in “salt”, as salt was valuable.

Now there is an idiom (modismo) where a mortal can be – or not – “worth his salt” = worth his salary.

Contemplate these 3 examples.

  • Any reporter worth his salt (…que se precie…) would ask direct questions.
  • Any politician worth his salt would say that subsidies distort markets (…que se precie afirma que las subvenciones deforman los mercados).
  • Is Mr. Sanchez, the Spanish Prime Minister, worth his salt?

So, are you worth your salt?


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