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Below the belt

Created date

June 2nd, 2009

Quite simply, the phrase below the belt started out as a formal rule in early pugilism (around the mid 18th century). The British boxer Jack Broughton drafted a list of rules that, together, made it clear that no fighter should strike his opponent anywhere below the waist. In time, these provisions fell under the descriptor below the belt. Today, we use the phrase to describe anything that is uncalled for, out of turn, or just plain low. "I haven't spoken to him since he made those below the belt remarks about my wife."